HMS Onslow (G17)

For other ships with the same name, see HMS Onslow and PNS Tippu Sultan.
Onslow in 1943
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Onslow
Ordered: 3 September 1939
Builder: John Brown & Company, Clydebank
Cost: £416,942
Laid down: 1 July 1940
Launched: 31 March 1941
Commissioned: 8 October 1941
Decommissioned: April 1947
  • Festina Lente
  • (Latin: "Make Haste Slowly")
Honours and
  • Norway 1941-45
  • Arctic 1941-45
  • Atlantic 1942
  • Malta convoys 1942
  • Barents Sea 1942
  • North Africa 1942
  • Normandy 1944
  • Biscay 1944
Fate: Transferred to Pakistan, 1949
Badge: On a field white an eagle black preying on an anchor gold
Name: PNS Tippu Sultan
Namesake: Tippu Sultan
Commissioned: 1949
Decommissioned: 1979
Out of service: 1957
Reinstated: 1960
Homeport: Karachi
Fate: Scrapped, 1980
General characteristics
Class and type: O-class destroyer flotilla leader
Displacement: 1,550 long tons (1,570 t)
Length: 345 ft (105 m) o/a
Beam: 35 ft (11 m)
Draught: 13 ft 6 in (4.11 m)
  • 2 × Parsons geared steam turbines, 40,000 shp
  • 2 Admiralty 3-drum boilers
  • 2 shafts
Speed: 37 knots (43 mph; 69 km/h)
Range: 3,850 nmi (7,130 km) at 20 kn (23 mph; 37 km/h)
Endurance: 472 tons oil
Complement: 176+
Service record
Part of: Home Fleet
Commanders: Captain Robert Sherbrooke

HMS Onslow was an O-class destroyer flotilla leader of the Royal Navy She was ordered from John Brown & Company at Clydebank, Glasgow on 3 September 1939. The ship was laid down on 1 July 1940 and launched on 31 March 1941. She was completed on 8 October 1941 at a cost of £416,942.[1]

Service history

Attached to the Home Fleet, Onslow served mostly as an escort to Arctic convoys. She also saw detached service in the Mediterranean during "Operation Harpoon" in 1942, and in the English Channel before and after the Normandy landings in mid-1944. Her most notable action was at the Battle of the Barents Sea in 1942, while escorting Convoy JW 51B to Russia. The convoy escorts held off attacks from the powerful German cruiser Admiral Hipper, with Onslow being heavily damaged and her captain, Robert Sherbrooke, severely injured.

In November 1945 she was the headquarter ship for Operation Deadlight - moving U-Boats from Loch Ryan to scuttle them off Bloody Foreland. She returned to the reserve at Devonport in 1947. In August 1947 she was a submarine target ship and anti-submarine trials ship at Portsmouth[2]

Decommissioned in October 1947, the ship was procured by the Pakistan Navy in 1949 and commissioned as PNS Tippu Sultan.[3] In 1954 she underwent a refit at Malta. Between 1957 and 1959 she underwent conversion to a Type 16 frigate at Birkenhead.[4] She served in the Pakistan Navy until 1979.

See also


  1. "HMS Onslow". Retrieved 27 July 2010.
  2. Critchley, Mike, "British Warships Since 1945: Part 3: Destroyers", Maritime Books: Liskeard, UK, 1982. ISBN 0-9506323-9-2, page 14
  3. In fact she remained HMS Tippu Sultan for some years, prior to renaming later in 1952-53. See documents and photograph of Mr A.Salim Khan, Pakistan's First Charge d'Affaires to Japan, and his voyage on this ship from the United States to Yokohama, in the Begum Mahmooda Salim Khan Collection/Papers, Accession Ref.No. 224-BMS, at the National Archives of Pakistan, Islamabad, website for further information
  4. Blackman, Raymond V B, Jane's Fighting Ships 1963-4, Sampson Low, Marston & Co. Ltd, London, p195


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