St Patrick’s Day in mid-March will mark 75 years since HMS Belfast was first launched in 1938. Ordered by the Admiralty in 1936 and launched by Mrs Neville Chamberlain, HMS Belfast is one of the last surviving World War II Royal Navy ships in the UK and is now a well-known tourist attraction on the river Thames, moored between Tower Bridge and London Bridge. HMS Belfast is now preserved by IWM (Imperial War Museums) and is an important visitor attraction. During the weekend of 16-17 March, there will be a series of special events and activities taking place to mark this monumental occasion. More details will be announced during 2013.
After fitting out by Harland & Wolff in Belfast and following builders’ trials, HMS Belfast was commissioned on 5 August 1939 under the command of Captain G. A. Scott DSO. She saw service in protecting arctic convoys during the war and after the war was involved in the Korean War. She was brought to London in the 1970s and opened to the public on 21 October 1971.