HMS Ambuscade (F172)

HMS Ambuscade was a Type 21 frigate of the Royal Navy. She was built by Yarrow Shipbuilders Ltd, Glasgow, Scotland. She was sold to Pakistan in 1993 and is still in service as PNS Tariq.

Ambuscade firing her 4.5-inch gun
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Ambuscade
Builder: Yarrow Shipbuilders
Yard number: 1008
Laid down: 1 September 1971
Launched: 18 January 1973
Commissioned: 5 September 1975
Decommissioned: 28 July 1993
Identification: Pennant number: F172
  • Tempori insidior
  • ("I bide my time")
Fate: Sold to Pakistan on 28 July 1993
General characteristics
Class and type: Type 21 frigate
Displacement: 3,250 tons full load
Length: 384 ft (117 m)
Beam: 41 ft 9 in (12.73 m)
Draught: 19 ft 6 in (5.94 m)
Speed: 32 knots (59 km/h; 37 mph)
  • 4,000 nmi (7,400 km; 4,600 mi) at 17 knots (31 km/h; 20 mph)
  • 1,200 nmi (2,200 km; 1,400 mi) at 30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)
Complement: 177
Aircraft carried: 1 × Westland Wasp helicopter, later refitted for 1 × Westland Lynx

Service history

Ambuscade was launched on 18 January 1973 by Lady Griffin, wife of the Controller of the Navy, and was commissioned at Devonport on 5 September 1975.[1] During 1976 and 1977 her commander was Peter Abbott who subsequently attained Flag rank.[2]

Ambuscade took part in the Falklands War of 1982, serving as an Electronic Warfare picket ship to the Task Force, and taking part in several naval gunfire support (NGS) missions.[1]

In 1983 Ambuscade collided with USS Dale in the Indian Ocean, resulting in part of her bows being torn away.[3] Ambuscade was laid up in Bombay for six weeks while a new bow was constructed and fitted.[4]

On 8 June 1984, Ambuscade went to the assistance of the schooner Stena of Sitoo, which had struck an object in the North Sea and been holed below the waterline.[5]

In late 1984, suffering from cracking in her hull, she was taken in for refitting, with a steel plate being welded down each side of the ship. At the same time modifications were made to reduce hull noise. Exocet launchers were also added in 'B' position and 3-inch launchers relocated to 02 deck midships.

List of Deployments[6]
From To Detail Note
19751976Sea trials
19771977Standing Naval Force Atlantic6 months
197819785th Frigate Squadron and cruiser HMS Blake. Western Atlantic and Pacific5 months
19791979UK waters
19791979Belize and West Indies Guardship
19801980Refit at Devonport
19811982Sea training. Armilla Patrol
19821982South Atlantic (Falklands War)
19831983Collision while on Armilla Patrol
19831984West Indies Guardship
19841986Refit at Devonport
19861987Falklands Guardship
19881988West Indies Guardship
19891989UK and Europe
19901990Falklands Guardship
19911991West Indies Guardship
19921992Falklands Guardship
19931993Sold to the Pakistan Navy


  1. Gough, Richie (30 August 2014). "Ambuscade Service History". Type 21 Club. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  2. Gough, Richie (30 August 2014). "HMS Ambuscade (F172)". Type 21 Club. Retrieved 13 June 2015.
  3. "HMS Ambuscade". ClydeBuilt Database. Archived from the original on 6 November 2004. Retrieved 8 November 2009.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)
  4. "Collision with USS Dale 1983". HMS Ambuscade Association. Retrieved 8 November 2009.
  5. "Air-sea aid for holed schooner". The Times (61853). London. 9 June 1984. col A, B, p. 3.
  6. "RN Career and Programme". HMS Ambuscade Association. Retrieved 9 October 2019.


  • "Home". HMS 'Ambuscade' Association.
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