B a t t l e H
o n o u r s
NORWAY 1940 - ATLANTIC 1940 - MALTA
CONVOYS 1942 - NORTH AFRICA 1942-44 -ARCTIC 1942-43 - ENGLISH CHANNEL 1942-43 - NORMANDY
1944 - BISCAY 1944
H e r a l d i c
D a t a
Badge: On a Field barry wavy of six Blue and White
a porcupine Gold.
M o t t o:
Kum Apim: 'Kill a thousand, a thousand will come'
Manning Division: Chatham
D e t a i l s
o f P r e - W a r S e r v i c e
1 9 3 8
Commenced Acceptance Trials
(Note: Gun mountings had not been installed due to late delivery)
On completion of Acceptance trials other than for gunnery equipment,
setting to work of gun mountings after delivery of equipment.
October Installation and setting to work in
21st Build completion and
commissioned for service in 2nd Tribal Destroyer Flotilla,
Completed Acceptance trials and storing.
Pennant Number for visual signalling purposes changed to F51
1 9 3 9
Carried out gun functioning trials and work-up for operational service.
Prepared for visit to West Africa
(Note: In view of the ship being named after the Ashanti Tribe, native
to the Gold Coast
was planned to meet the Chief and Elders of the Ashanti Tribe to
establish a formal relationship with the new warship which bore their
Took passage to Takoradi.
27th Arrived at Takoradi for appropriate
ceremonials during which the ship was presented
with a silver bell and a gold shield with an assurance from Commanding
these gifts would remain with the ship at all times during her service.
9th Passage from Takoradi to Gibraltar.
Rejoined Home Fleet
at Gibraltar for joint exercises with ships of Mediterranean Fleet.
Took part in
exercises with ships of Flotilla.
On completion of exercises took passage to Chatham.
Leave period at
re-identified as 6th Destroyer Flotilla.
Resumed Home Fleet programme and prepared for official visit to
Arrived at Cherbourg.
8th Passage from Cherbourg
to resume Home Fleet exercise and visits programme.
1st Diverted from Programme
after sinking of HM Submarine THETIS and took passage to
area to join Home Fleet ships carrying out rescue operations.
failed and 99 of the crew lost their lives.)
4th Released from THETIS
operation and resumed Home Fleet programme.
Deployed in Home waters with Flotilla for Fleet exercises.
Home Fleet deployment in continuation including exercise in Atlantic
with Anglo French
(Note: This may be have
been her appointed war station.)
D e t a i l s o
f W a r S e r v i c e
(for more ship information,
Naval History Homepage
and type name in Site Search)
Withdrawn from operational duties for repair to propulsion machinery
Under repair to
defective turbine blades
(Note: This type of defect
was common to ships of this Class
AFRIDI TO NIZAM by J English.)
17th Resumed Home Fleet duties
at Scapa Flow with Flotilla
Present at Scapa Flow during air raid and accounted
for one enemy aircraft (not confirmed in other sources.
Believed to have been ESKIMO).
Home Fleet deployment for screening of major warships, patrol and convoy
(Note: Took part in provision of cover for passage of first two
Canadian Troop convoys)
1 9 4 0
Home Fleet deployment with Flotilla in continuation
Withdrawn from operational service for repair
Took passage to
Under repair of leaks affecting steam supply from boilers and for
(Note: Ships of the Class all
experienced leaks during early service due to stresses on
structure during high speed operations in rough weather, See above
details of degaussing equipment to counter effect of ships magnetism
magnetic mines see THE TORPEDOMEN by A Poland.)
On completion of
dockyard work and post refit trials resumed Home Fleet Flotilla duties
at Scapa Flow.
Deployed at Scapa Flow with Home Fleet
7th After movement of German
warships in North Sea had been confirmed sailed as part of
destroyer screen for HM Battlecruiser REPULSE, HM Battleships RODNEY and
VALIANT, HM Cruisers SHEFFIELD, PENELOPE and French cruiser EMIL BERTIN
to intercept ships reported by aircraft
For details see NAVAL OPERATIONS OF THE CAMPAIGN IN NORWAY (HMSO).
(Note: EMIL BERTIN later detaches and returned to Scapa Flow)
8th Deployed with Fleet screen
in Bergen-Trondheim area.
9th Under air attack with Fleet
units. See reference.
10th Remained with Home Fleet
units to provide cover for passage of Convoy HN25 from
Bergen to UK and for HM Aircraft Carrier FURIOUS during air operations
warships at Trondheim.
11th Fleet screening and
convoy escort in continuation..
17th Deployed as screen for HM
Cruisers YORK, EFFINGHAM and CALCUTTA in search
for five German destroyers reported off Stavanger.
(Note: One source records passage to land seamen at Andalsnes as
advance party prior
planned landings (Operation PRIMROSE)
28th Under air attack and
sustained damage during interception patrol off Trondheim.
(Note: Bomb explosion under hull after near miss caused extensive
damage to ship’s
with loss of power.
30th Passage for repair.
Under repair at Dundee commercial shipyard.
Pennant Number for visual signalling purposes changed to G51
23rd On completion resumed
Flotilla duties with Home Fleet.
7th Provided screen for HM Battleship VALIANT
with HM Destroyers TARTAR and MASHONA
to provide cover for return
passage of evacuation convoys from Narvik.
9th Deployed with Flotilla for screening of
Home Fleet major warships during search for
German SCHARNHORST and GNEISENAU after sinking of HM Aircraft Carrier
GLORIOUS in North Sea whilst on passage to UK after evacuation from
Deployed with Flotilla for Home Fleet major warships screening and
Home Fleet deployment in continuation
29th Detached for escort of
ships of 1st Minelaying Squadron during minelay in Northern
Barrage (Operation SN14 – See Naval Staff History (Mining) for details.)
Home Fleet duties with Flotilla in continuation.
Deployed with HM Destroyer MAORI and SIKH to attack coastal shipping off
Norway. See ENGAGE THE ENEMY MORE CLOSELY.
16th Sustained damage in
collision with HM Destroyer FAME during deployment off Tyne
estuary in high speed
operations intended to detonate mines prior to passage of HM
Battleship KING GEORGE V from Newcastle on Tyne shipyard to Rosyth for
completion of fitting out for service after build.
(Note: Ship grounded after collision and could not be refloated until
removal of top
including armament items. Some leaks were also repaired.)
November Passage to Type under tow and taken in
hand for repair.
Paid-off and ship’s company returned to Depot.
Taken in hand for repair at Swan Hunter shipyard, Wallsend.
1 9 4 1
(Note: Work included removal of
propulsion machinery and two boilers to
out replacement of propellers and A Brackets.
Gun Mounting was replaced by a twin 4IN mounting and preparation
for fit of 20mm Oerlikon guns for Close Range defence.
mast structure was replaced and height of after funnel reduced to
improve arcs of
fire for AA weapons.
Type 285 was fitted for fire-control of main armament with a
Type286M radar for warning of approach of ships and aircraft.
details of development and use of radar by Royal Navy see RADAR
by D Howse.
extensive refit did not prevent future problems with structure or with
machinery which continued throughout remainder of service.)
Recommissioned for service in 6th Destroyer Flotilla, Home Fleet.
(Note: A high proportion of
the ship’s company were survivors from sister destroyer
MASHONA which had been sunk in May. These experienced ratings
ship to more quickly complete preparations for operational deployment.)
Carried out post
refit trials prior to resuming duties with Flotilla.
Worked-up at Scapa Flow with ships of Home Fleet prior to operational
Resumed Flotilla deployment in Home Fleet for screening and patrol
9th Deployed with screen
for Home Fleet ships during air operations against Bodo, Norway.
Home Fleet duties in continuation.
Nominated for support of planned Commando raids on Lofoten islands and
22nd Deployed with HM
Destroyers SOMALI, BEDOUIN and ESKIMO of Flotilla, HM
WHEATLAND, LAMERTON, Polish destroyers ORP
KUJAWIAK as escort for HM Landing Ships PRINZ ALBERT
CHARLOTTE during Commando Raid (Operation ARCHERY)
For details see
THE WATERY MAZE by B Fergusson.)
26th Carried out
diversionary operation during which German Trawler GEIER was boarded
after being scuttled by
crew. Valuable documents were recovered before ship sank.
(Note: These are
not recorded as related to ENIGMA information.)
30th Passage to Scapa Flow
on completion of ARCHERY.
1 9 4 2
Flotilla duties in Home Fleet in continuation.
Nominated for Home Fleet screening duties to provide cover for passage
PQ12 and PQ13
from Iceland to Murmansk and return Convoys QP8 and QP9 from
North Russia to
convoys were perceived to be under threat of attack by German surface
warships including the battleship TIRPITZ.)
4th Sailed from Scapa Flow as part of screen for HM Battleship KING GEORGE
HM Aircraft Carrier
VICTORIOUS and HM Cruiser BERWICK with HM Destroyers
TARTAR, BEDOUIN, ESKIMO, FURY, ECHO and
For details of all
Russian Convoy operations see CONVOYS TO RUSSIA by RA
Ruegg, THE RUSSIAN
CONVOYS by B Schoefield, ARCTIC CONVOYS by R
CONVOY ! by P Kemp.)
April Deployment with Home Fleet
screen in continuation of covering duties in Arctic.
May Nominated for escort
of Russian Convoy PQ16.
16th Deployed with HM
Auxiliary AA Ship ALYNBANK, HM Destroyers ACHATES,
MARTIN, VOLUNTEER and Polish destroyer
ORP GARLAND, HM Corvettes
HYDERABAD, STARWORT and Free French corvette FLEUR-
Ocean Escort for Convoy PQ16 during passage to Murmansk.
19th Under attack by
U591 which failed.
30th Detached from PQ16
with Ocean Escort and arrival of RN minesweepers from
carry out local escort into harbour.
air attacks credited with destruction of two aircraft in defence of PQ16.
This ship is not recorded as being part of escort for return convoy
June Resumed Flotilla duties
with Home Fleet.
26th Deployed as part
of screen for HMS DUKE OF YORK, HMS VICTORIOUS,
USS WASHINGTON, HM Cruisers CUMBERLAND and NIGERIA,
Destroyers BLANKNEY, ESCAPADE, FAULKNOR, MARNE, MARTIN,
WHEATLAND, US destroyers MAYANT and RHIND to provide
passage of Russian Convoy PQ17 from Iceland to Archangel and QP13
Russia to Reykjavik
convoys were considered likely to be attacked by German surface
warships including the battleship
TIRPITZ but Home Fleet major units were
instructed to remain north east of Mayen Island
July Fleet screening
duties in continuation in Arctic waters.
4th Remained with
Fleet units when PQ17 was ordered by Admiralty to scatter because
of threat of
see above references and THE CONVOY IS TO SCATTER by Jack
from Arctic screening returned to Scapa Flow with Home Fleet units.
other Home Fleet ships for escort of Malta relief convoy.
PEDESTAL – See PEDESTAL by P Smith, Naval Staff History
CONVOYS by R Woodman for details of this vital
After arrival at Scapa
Flow under repair and modification to fit 20mm Oerlikon
close range defence against air attacks.
August Passage from Scapa Flow as screen for HM Battleships NELSON and RODNEY,
KENYA, NIGERIA with HM Destroyers ESKIMO, TARTAR,
AMAZON, MALCOLM, PATHFINDER, PENN, QUENTIN
BICESTER, DERWENT, LEDBURY, WILTON, ZETLAND,
WISHART and WOLVERINE as escort for military Convoy
passage from Clyde to Gibraltar.
9th Deployed with HM
destroyers INTREPID, ICARUS, FURY, DERWENT,
BICESTER, DERWENT, LEDBURY, WILTON, PATHFINDER
and PENN as
Force X to escort HM Cruisers CAIRO, KENYA, MANCHESTER,
NIGERIA and ships of WS21S
during passage to Malta through Sicilian Narrows.
10th Detached from
WS21S to refuel from Force R, Refuelling Group).
escort for WS21S.on completion of refuelling.
11th Under submarine
attacks. One by Italian BRIN which was repelled by HMS
Aircraft Carrier EAGLE was torpedoed and sunk by U73.)
12th Under further
submarine attacks during which Italian COBALTO was rammed
and sunk by
HMS ITHURIEL. part of escort for warships from Gibraltar.
air attacks during which HM Destroyer FORESIGHT and
Carrier INDOMITABLE were hit and damaged.
FORESIGHT later had to be sunk by own forces.)
with Force X as escort for WS21S through Sicilian Narrows.
Flag of Rear
Admiral HM Burrough, Senior Officer Force X transferred from
after damaged torpedo fired by Italian submarine AXUM.
(Note: HM Cruiser CAIRO
was also hit by two torpedoes from AXUM and
had to be sunk by own forces.
13th Under night
attack by Italian torpedo boats during which HMS MANCHESTER
was hit and
later had to be abandoned and scuttled.
daylight came under sustained air attacks causing boiler room fire which
by near miss and extinguished. Escorted damaged tanker OHIO.
14th Under continuing
air attacks during final passage into Malta with remaining
Took passage with HMS
KENYA, HMS CHARYBDIS, HMS INTREPID,
HMS PATHFINDER and HMS FURY after arrival of
ships of Force Z west of Sicilian Narrows after submarine and air
full details of PEDESTAL see references above.)
15th Arrived at
Gibraltar as part of screen for combined Forces X and Z.
19th Took return
passage to Scapa Flow as escort for HM Battleship RODNEY.
September Deployed at Scapa Flow and nominated for duty with Fighting Escort for
Convoy PQ18 with HM Cruiser SCYLLA, HM Destroyers
FAULKNOR, FURY, IMPULSIVE, INTREPID, MARNE,
METEOR, MILNE, OFFA, ONSLAUGHT, ONSLOW,
OPPORTUNE, SOMALI and TARTAR.
cover was provided by HM Escort Carrier AVENGER and an
Ocean Escort which sailed with PQ18. Distant Cover was given by
Home Fleet warships with destroyer screen. See references)
9th Joined PQ18 with
ships of Fighting Escort.
12th Under U-Boat attacks during which U88 was sunk by three ships of
13th Under further
submarine attacks which sank two mercantiles. In later air
which sank eight ships in PQ18.
14th U589 sunk by
combined air and surface attacks by Fighting Escort/
MARY LUCKENBACH sunk in air attacks with loss of 20 of
15th Under air attacks which repelled
by AVENGER aircraft and intense
AA fire by
16th Detached from
PQ18 with HMS AVENGER, HMS SCYLLA and destroyers
of the Fighting Escort.
17th Joined return
Convoy QP14 as Escort for part of passage to Loch Ewe.
20th Detached from
escort after HMS SOMALI had been hit by torpedo from
U703 and badly
damaged. Took damaged destroyer in tow and began return
escorted by HM Destroyers ESKIMO, INTREPID, OPPORTUNE
Trawler LORD MIDDLETON.
24th Tow abandoned in
deteriorating weather after 420 miles passage.
Crew of HMS
SOMALI rescued before ship broke in two and sank.
25th Returned to Scapa Flow and resumed Flotilla duties with Home Fleet
October Under repair and
maintenance at Rosyth
for detached service in support of planned allied landings
Africa (Operation TORCH)
Gibraltar to join Eastern Task Force.
November Briefed for TORCH at Gibraltar
and prepared for support duties.
for screening duties for HMS SHEFFIELD, HMS SCYLLA,
CHARYBDIS and HMS AVENGER during passage to Algiers.
8th Support duties during assault at
details of TORCH see Naval Staff History)
December On release from TORCH
deployed at Algiers as part of Force Q for
to prevent passage of enemy ships for support of
defence of Algeria.
1 9 4 3
January Under repair at Gibraltar
completion deployed for escort of Landing Craft during
Atlantic on passage to Middle East for service in
February Resumed service with
Force Q at Algiers and deployed for interception
shipping and defence of western Mediterranean coastal convoys
as screen for HM Cruisers AURORA and PENELOPE.
March Force Q deployment in
from Force Q for escort of military convoy on passage to
Gibraltar from UK.
21st Joined Convoy
KMF11 after it had detached from Convoy WS28 west of
and deployed as escort during passage to Gibraltar.
22nd Detached from KMF11 to escort
ss EMPIRE MIGHT to Dakar after
been disabled by fire on board.
23rd Passage from
Dakar to resume duties at Algiers with Force Q.
April Force Q deployment
for convoy escort and interception in continuation.
May Took part in
operations to intercept enemy craft evacuating personnel
African coast to Italy (Operation RETRIBUTION)
June Deployed in Malta
but incidence of defects determined that she should return
to UK for
July Passage to Thames
commercial shipyard for refit.
July Under refit by
Green and Silley Weir shipyard, London.
to September During this refit the Tripod
foremast was replaced by new Lattice structure
to allow fit of new type radar
equipment, additional 20mm Close
weapons and repair of machinery systems.
October Post refit trials and
shakedown for operational service with Home Fleet
to Scapa Flow to rejoin Flotilla.
15th Arrived at Scapa Flow to work-up for operational service.
November Nominated for screening
duties for Home Fleet major units providing
Cover for transit of Russian Convoys JW54B and return Convoy RA54B.
28th Deployed as escort for HM
Battleship ANSON, HM Cruiser BELFAST
Destroyers MATCHLESS, MUSKETEER and ORIBI
from screen due to weather conditions.
as Ocean Escort for Convoy JW55B with HM Destroyers
MATCHLESS, HMS METEOR, HMS MILNE, MUSKETEER,
OPPORTUNE, VIRAGO and Canadian destroyer HMCS ATHABASKAN.
from JW55B with same ships.
23rd Joined return
Convoy RA55A with same ships.
with RA55A when HM Destroyers MATCHLESS,
MUSKETEER, OPPORTUNE and VIRAGO were detached to join
escort of Convoy JW55 under threat of attack
by German battleship
from RA55A when Local Escort joined as escort to Loch Ewe.
9 4 4
January Detached from Home
Fleet and took passage to Azores area.
15th Part of
escort for HM Battleship KING GEORGE V during passage
Gibraltar to UK with Prime Minister embarked.
Returned to Fleet duties at Scapa Flow.
February Transferred to 10th
Destroyer Flotilla for duties in English Channel
took passage to Plymouth.
Deployed with HM Destroyers TARTAR, ATHABASKAN (RCN),
(RCN) HURON (RCN), Polish destroyers ORP PIORUN
BLYSKAWICA for offensive operations against enemy shipping
escorts off coast of France. (Operation TUNNEL Series)
March Deployed at Plymouth with ships of
Flotilla as Force 26 for TUNNEL
action against E-Boats during patrol in SW Approaches.
17th Escorted HM Cruiser Minelayer
APOLLO with HMCS HAIDA and
HURON during minelay off Ushant (Operation HOSTILE 28)
completion of lay detached to carry out offensive sweep to east.
cover for Motor Launches during their minelaying off north
of Brittany near Isle de Bas with HM Escort Destroyers
WENSLEYDALE, MELBREAK and HMCS HAIDA
(Operation HOSTILE 14)
20th Met HMS
APOLLO in SW Approaches with HMCS HAIDA for escort
during minelay west of Isle de Vierge (Operation HOSTILE 29)
Returned to Plymouth as escort when operation abandoned because of
23rd Deployed with HMCS HAIDA
and HMCS ATHABASKAN as escort
HMS APOLLO during passage to Isle de Vierge for minelay.
action with HMCS ATHABASKAN, HMCS HAIDA, HMCS
and HMS BLACK PRINCE against German Torpedo Boats T24,
and T29. T29 was sunk and the other two damaged.
Damaged in collision with HMCS HURON during
May Under repair by HM
completion deployed as 19th Destroyer Division, Plymouth
Command with HMS TARTAR, HMCS HAIDA and HMCS
for support of planned allied landings in Normandy.
Prepared for support of NEPTUNE.
For details of
naval activities before and during NEPTUNE see
OPERATION NEPTUNE by K Edwards and LANDINGS IN
NORMANDY, June 1944 (HMSO).
in support of NEPTUNE based at Plymouth and carried
patrols in SW Approaches and Bay of Biscay to prevent any
attempt by enemy surface warships to interfere with landing and
Deployed in SW Approaches with ships of 19th Division
9th Following aircraft sighting report
intercepted German destroyers
miles NW of Isle de Bas and engaged with HMCS HAIDA,
HMCS HURON, HMS ESKIMO, HM Destroyer JAVELIN and
Polish destroyers PIORUN and BLYSKAWICA.
German Z32 driven ashore and wrecked, Ex Dutch destroyer
TJERK HIDDES was sunk and Z24 badly damaged. See references.
Intercepted German minesweepers west of Jersey during patrol with
PIORUN. M343 sunk and five other minesweepers damaged.
30th Sank two trawlers off
Channel Islands during offensive patrol.
out offensive patrols in Bay of Biscay to support of military operations.
August Deployed with HM Cruiser BELLONA, HMS
HAIDA, HMCS HURON and HMCS ATHABASKAN in Bay of
Biscay to intercept craft attempting to evacuate enemy personnel
from French coast.
German convoy north of Isle d’Yeu and sank two escort
minesweepers a Patrol Vessel and Coastal Launch OTTO.
(Note: HMCS HAIDA was damage in this engagement.)
return, operational capabilities under review and restricted to local
convoy escort duties in SW
September Extensive refit and
Passage from Plymouth to Tyne
October Taken in hand for
refit by Palmer’s shipyard at Hebburn, Newcastle.
November Under refit which
included repair and replacement of some propulsion
to December and electrical
equipment, installation of improved new design radar outfits
1 9 4 5
January Refit work in
August Carried out
post refit trials during which defects were experienced including
propeller shaft bushes.
nominated for reduction to Reserve status in Category B.
S p e c i a l N
o t e
The other three TRIBAL
Class destroyers still in commission were deployed in the Eastern Fleet as part of the 10th Destroyer Flotilla.
P o s t W a
r N o t e s
HMS ASHANTI Paid-off and went into Reserve after VJ Day.
The ship placed on the Disposal List in 1947 after which she was used for Ship Target Trials
before being and sold to BISCO the next year. She was towed to Troon for demolition by West of Scotland
Shipbreakers where she arrived on 12th April 1948 for demolition. On 9th March 1959 the name was
carried forward for a new Type 81 TRIBAL Class General Purpose Frigate when launched at Scotstoun.
Glasgow by Yarrow Shipbuilders. This new warship entered service in 1962 and deployed operationally until
1977 when she was relegated to harbour training duties. Placed on the Disposal
List in 1981 she was later scrapped.
CONVOY ESCORT MOVEMENTS of HMS
by Don Kindell
This convoy list has not been cross-checked with the text above
Date convoy sailed
Joined convoy as escort
Date convoy arrived
(Note on Convoys)