HMS Ajax (F114)
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|Laid down:||12 October 1959|
|Launched:||16 August 1962|
|Commissioned:||10 December 1963|
|Decommissioned:||31 May 1985|
|Identification:||Pennant number: F114|
|Class and type:||Leander-class frigate|
|Length:||372 ft (113 m)|
|Beam:||41 ft (12 m)|
|Draught:||18 ft (5 m)|
|Speed:||30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)|
|Range:||5,300 nmi (9,800 km; 6,100 mi) at 12 knots (22 km/h; 14 mph)|
|Complement:||251 as built, 257 after Ikara refit|
|Aircraft carried:||1 × Wasp helicopter|
HMS Ajax was a Leander-class frigate of the Royal Navy. She was built by the famous Cammell Laird company of Birkenhead. Ajax was launched on 16 August 1962 and commissioned on 10 December 1963. She was originally intended to be named HMS Fowey, and laid down as a Rothesay class, but instead became part of Batch 1 of the Leander class.
In 1964, Ajax deployed to the Far East, becoming leader of the 24th Escort Group. It was a long deployment, and she did not return to the UK until 1968. In 1970, Ajax became the Gibraltar guard ship, a required deployment at that time due to the tense fears of invasion by General Franco.
In September 1970, Ajax began a modernisation at Devonport Dockyard that lasted to 1973, having her 4.5 inch turret replaced by an Ikara anti-submarine missile system. A pair of quadruple GWS22 SeaCat launchers were fitted aft and 40 mm guns were mounted amidships.
Following her conversion she became leader of the 8th Frigate Squadron. In 1974, she assisted in the evacuation of British citizens after the Turkish invasion of Cyprus. In 1976, while on a visit to Canada, Ajax visited the town of Ajax, Ontario, which had been named in honour of her predecessor, the Leander-class cruiser Ajax made famous by the Battle of the River Plate during the Second World War. The 'new' Ajax was granted the freedom of the city.
In 1977, Ajax underwent a refit at Devonport Dockyard, deploying in 1979 to the Mediterranean. In 1980, she underwent a refit at Gibraltar which was completed in 1981. That year, Ajax became leader of the 1st Frigate Squadron. She did not take part in the 1982 Falklands War , but was deployed as Persian Gulf guard ship; she later completed a 4 month deployment around the Falklands as part of the South Atlantic Protection Force in 1984. She participated in further deployments that culminated in the highlight of her final year in 1985, when she escorted the HMY Britannia, which took a number of the Royal Family on a tour of Italy.
She was decommissioned 31 May 1985, then replaced HMS Salisbury as a static training ship at Devonport. On 3 August 1988, Ajax arrived at Millom, Cumbria to be broken up. Her anchor is now located in Ajax, Ontario.
|1963||1965||Captain The Hon D P Seely RN|
|1965||1966||Captain Gordon Tait DSC RN|
|1966||1968||Captain George A de G Kitchin RN|
|1968||1969||Captain David Hepworth RN|
|1969||1970||Captain Harry R Keate RN|
|1970||1973||Refit (Ikara Conversion)|
|1973||1974||Captain Richard J Bates RN|
|1974||1976||Captain David J MacKenzie RN|
|1976||1977||Captain Robert Squires RN|
|1977||1978||Captain Peter Cobb RN|
|1978||1980||Captain M J F Rawlinson RN|
|1980||1981||Captain Timothy M. Bevan RN|
|1981||1983||Captain Jeremy Michael Porter RN|
|1983||1984||Captain Peter Abbott RN|
|1984||1985||Captain John F S Trinder RN|
- Critchley 1986, p. 116.
- Marriott 1986, pp. 80, 82.
- Mackie, Colin. "I: Royal Navy Senior Appointments". British Armed Forces (1900–). p. 187. Retrieved 19 January 2014.
- Mackie, Colin. "II: Royal Navy- Captains Commanding Warships". British Armed Forces (1900–). Retrieved 19 January 2014.
- 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. OCLC 67375475.
- Critchley, Mike (1986). British Warships Since 1945: Part 5 Frigates. Liskeard, UK: Maritime Books. ISBN 0-907771-13-0.
- Marriott, Leo (1983). Royal Navy Frigates 1945-1983. Shepperton, Surrey, UK: Ian Allen. ISBN 0-7110-1322-5.