According to various sources, the Edinburgh-class light cruisers actually formed a subclass within the Town class of the Royal Navy. Despite this, the cruisers HMS Edinburgh and the world famous HMS Belfast are generally considered to be a separate class due to their differences from the ships of the other two subclasses, the Southampton subclass and the Gloucester subclass. The Edinburgh class were considered “Washington-type” cruisers although they were built within the limitations agreed upon in the 1930 London Treaty. Their design combined the standard displacement of heavy cruisers and the armament of light cruisers, making this class the The most powerful “large light cruisers” of the Royal Navy.

EDINBURGH class gallery 1 and more info

EDINBURGH class gallery 2 and more info


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Country of origin

United Kingdom


Harland & Wolff Shipyard (Belfast) – Swan Hunter Shipyard (Edinburgh)


Light cruiser

Entered service



781 (880 as Flagship)

Displacement, (full load)

13,175 tonnes (Edinburgh) – 13,385 tonnes (Belfast)

Dimensions (length x beam x draught)

186.99 x 19.30 (20.22 Belfast since 1942) x 6.48 (7.06 Belfast since 1942) meters

Armour, (maximum)

Steel: Barbettes: 51mm – Main turrets: 102mm – Command tower: 114mm
Steel: Belt: 114mm – Bulkhead: 63mm – Armor deck: 76mm


4 x Admiralty 3-drum boilers – 4 x Parsons geared steam turbines

Power, (total)

80,000 shp

Shafts - Screws

4 shafts – 4 screws


32 knots (59 km/h)


2,260 tonnes of fuel oil


8,000 n. miles (14,800 km) at 14 knots


2 x Supermarine Walrus seaplanes (until 1943)

Main guns

12 x BL 152/50mm Mk. XXIII guns in triple turrets

Secondary guns

Originally: 12 x 102 mm Mk.XVI dual purpose guns in twin mounts

AA guns

Originally: 16 x 40 mm "pom-pom" guns in octuple mounts
Since 1959 (Belfast): 6 x 40mm twin Bofors guns

Machine guns

Originally: 8 x Vickers 13mm in quadruple mounts


Originally: 6 x Mk.IX 533mm torpedoes in two triple Mk.IV assemblies

ASW armament

Originally: 15 x Mk.VII depth charges


2 ships: Edinburgh – Belfast