HMS Chichester (F59)

HMS Chichester was a Salisbury-class or Type 61 aircraft direction frigate of the British Royal Navy.

HMS Chichester at Famagusta, 1960
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Chichester
Ordered: 28 June 1951
Builder: Fairfields
Laid down: 26 June 1953
Launched: 21 April 1955
Commissioned: 16 May 1958
Identification: Pennant number F59
Fate: Sold for breaking 17 March 1981
General characteristics
Class and type: Salisbury-class frigate
  • 2,170 tons standard
  • 2,400 tons full load
Length: 340 ft (100 m) o/a
Beam: 40 ft (12 m)
Draught: 15 ft 6 in (4.72 m)
Propulsion: 8 × ASR1 diesels, 12,400 shp (9,200 kW), 2 shafts
Speed: 24 kn (44 km/h)
Range: 7,500 nmi (13,900 km) at 16 kn (30 km/h)
Complement: 235
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • Type 960 air search radar, later Type 965 AKE-2
  • Type 293Q target indication radar, later Type 993n
  • Type 982 aircraft direction radar, laterType 986
  • Type 277Q height finding radar, later Type 278
  • Type 974 navigation radarlater Type 978
  • Type 275 fire control radar on director Mark 6M
  • Type 262 fire control on STAAG mount
  • Type 1010 Cossor Mark 10 IFF
  • Type 174 search sonar
  • Type 170 attack sonar


Chichester was first commissioned in 1958 and in that year rescued crew of the coaster Concha off Milford Haven before the ship sank.[1] The commission took her through the Mediterranean to the Far East returning via South Africa and South America. In 1963/4 she was refitted in Chatham with macks (masts and stacks) along with type 965 & 993 radar. In 1968 she deployed for Fishery Protection duties and was accused by the Soviet Union of spying on Soviet naval exercises.[2]

Towards the end of her career, in 1971 the Type 61 frigate was refitted as a Hong Kong guard ship, to replace an ageing Type 12 frigate, due in part to her good range conferred by her diesel machinery. Her radar fit was reduced to radar 978, 993M and the 275, Mk 6 director for the twin 4.5 and a more suitable light arms for patrol off Hong Kong of a 2 single 20mm guns and a 1 X 40mm Bofors.[3]

The election of the Labour Government in 1974 saw a further reduction of naval forces, east of Suez with the frigate being supplemented by five Ton Class minesweepers converted for Patrol duties, as the largest vessels maintaining a presence for protection of British interests. Chichester left Hong Kong in the spring of 1976 to return to the UK.

Following decommissioning Chichester arrived for scrapping at Queenborough on 17 March 1981.[4]


  1. Mason, Geoffrey B. (2007). "Chronology, Part 2 - 1951-60". Retrieved 24 May 2015.
  2. Mason, Geoffrey B. (2007). "Chronology, Part 3 - 1961-70". Retrieved 24 May 2015.
  3. Marriott, Leo (1983). Royal Navy Frigates 1945-1983 (1st ed.). Shepperton UK: Ian Allan. pp. 50–1.
  4. "HMS Chicester". Clydebuilt Database. Archived from the original on 9 December 2014. Retrieved 24 May 2015.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)


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