HMS Antrim (D18)
HMS Antrim was a County-class destroyer of the British Royal Navy launched on 19 October 1967. In the Falklands War, she was the flagship for the recovery of South Georgia, participating in the first ever anti-submarine operation successfully conducted exclusively by helicopters. In 1984, she was commissioned into the Chilean Navy, and renamed Almirante Cochrane.
Chilean destroyer Cochrane
|Ordered:||5 January 1965|
|Builder:||Upper Clyde Shipbuilders|
|Laid down:||20 January 1966|
|Launched:||19 October 1967|
|Sponsored by:||Mrs Roy Mason, wife of then Minister of Defence (Equipment), Roy Mason|
|Commissioned:||14 July 1970|
|Identification:||pennant number: D18|
|Fate:||Sold to Chile on 22 June 1984|
|Acquired:||22 June 1984|
|Decommissioned:||7 December 2006|
|Class and type:||County-class destroyer|
|Displacement:||5,440 tonnes (6,850 tonnes full load)|
|Length:||522 ft (159 m)|
|Beam:||53 ft (16 m)|
|Draught:||20 ft (6.1 m)|
|Propulsion:||COSAG (Combined steam and gas) turbines, 2 shafts|
|Aircraft carried:||1 × Wessex HAS Mk 3 helicopter Humphrey|
|Aviation facilities:||Flight deck and enclosed hangar for embarking one helicopter|
Antrim first commissioned in 1970 and served her first commission in home and Mediterranean waters. In the mid-1970s, the Royal Navy removed 'B' turret and replaced it with four Exocet missile launchers to give her a much more powerful anti-ship capability. After installation of the Exocet missiles it was found that the missile could be activated by small arms fire, so armoured plates were fitted to the outer sides of the missiles containers.
In 1982 she formed part of the Royal Navy task force for service in the Falklands War.
Antrim was the flagship of Operation Paraquet, the recovery of South Georgia in April 1982, where she took part in a 400-shell bombardment. Her helicopter, a Westland Wessex HAS.Mk3, was responsible for the rescue of 16 SAS men from Fortuna Glacier, and the crew of two previous rescue helicopters that had crashed. The aircraft played a key role in the detection and disabling of the Argentinian submarine Santa Fe. This was the first ever anti-submarine operation successfully conducted exclusively by helicopters. Captain Lagos, commander of the Argentine forces on South Georgia, signed the surrender document for the Argentine forces there in her wardroom. Lieutenant-Commander Alfredo Astiz signed a separate document shortly afterwards aboard HMS Plymouth.
While supporting the main landing at San Carlos Water, 12 bombs narrowly missed, but a 1,000 lb (450 kg) bomb penetrated Antrim. It did not explode or kill anyone, and it took 10 hours to remove. Antrim fired her Sea Slug Missile at an Argentine Air Force A-4 Skyhawk without hitting it.
Antrim was decommissioned in 1984 and sold to Chile on 22 June 1984. The Chileans renamed her Almirante Cochrane after Thomas Cochrane, who had commanded the Chilean Navy from 1817 to 1822. In 1994, Almirante Cochrane underwent the same refit as her sister ship Blanco Encalada. This entailed removing her Sea Slug launcher and extending her deck aft to allow the installation of a new, larger hangar. In 1996 she received the Barak SAM in place of her Seacat launchers.
The Chilean Navy decommissioned Almirante Cochrane on 7 December 2006. On 11 December 2010, she was towed to China for scrap.
Affiliates as HMS Antrim
|1970||1971||Captain H W E Hollins RN|
|1971||1973||Captain D A Loram MVO RN|
|1973||1974||Captain George A F Bower RN|
|1974||1975||Captain Harry R Keate RN|
|1975||1977||Captain R Michael Burgoyne RN|
|1977||1979||Captain Gordon F Walwyn RN|
|1979||1981||Captain Michael F Parry RN|
|1981||1983||Captain B G Young DSO RN|
|1983||1984||Captain Jake D L Backus RN|
- "Captain Brian Young obituary". The Daily Telegraph. 12 January 2010.
- HMS Gloucester delivers Task Force South exhibit to Falklands Museum
- HMS Antrim and the Royal Irish Rangers
- Navy News – Fact Card – HMS Antrim
- Colledge, J. J.; Warlow, Ben (2006) . Ships of the Royal Navy: The Complete Record of all Fighting Ships of the Royal Navy (Rev. ed.). London: Chatham Publishing. ISBN 978-1-86176-281-8.
- McCart, Neil, 2014. County Class Guided Missile Destroyers, Maritime Books. ISBN 978-1904459637
- Yates, D. (2006) Bomb Alley – Falklands War 1982: Aboard HMS Antrim at War, Pen & Sword Maritime, ISBN 1-84415-417-3
- Parry, Chris (2012) "Down South: a Falklands War Diary" Viking Penguin ISBN 978-0-670-92145-4