List of destroyer classes of the Royal Navy

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This is a list of destroyer classes of the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom, organised chronologically by entry into service.

Torpedo boat destroyers

In 1913, the surviving members of the large heterogeneous array of older 27-knot and 30-knot torpedo boat destroyer types (all six of the original 26-knot ships had been disposed of by the end of 1912) were organised into the A, B, C and D classes according to their design speed and the number of funnels they possessed. All were of a "turtle-back" design and, excepting a few "builder's specials", powered by reciprocating engines. It should be stressed that these A to D class designations did not exist before 1913, and only applied to those "turtle-backed" destroyers surviving to that time.

Conventional destroyers

In 1913, lettered names were given to all Royal Navy destroyers, previously known after the first ship of that class. The River or E class of 1913 were the first destroyers of the Royal Navy with a high forecastles instead of "turtleback" bow making this the first class with a more recognizable modern configuration.

Inter-war standard classes

World War II War Emergency Programme destroyers

The following were ordered as part of the War Emergency Programme classes:

Post-war all-gun design

Guided-missile destroyers

  • County class: 8 ships (4 Batch I, 4 Batch II), 1961–1967
  • Type 82: 1 ship, 1969
  • Type 42: 14 ships (6 Sheffield, 4 Exeter, 4 Manchester), 1971–1983
  • Type 43: 0 ships (8 cancelled), 1981
  • Type 45: 6 ships, all commissioned between 2009 and 2013

See also