Royal Navy retires Scimitar-class patrol boats

Photo: Royal Navy

The Royal Navy decommissioned its two Scimitar-class fast patrol boats in a ceremony in Portsmouth on Wednesday, March 30.

Sister vessels HMS Scimitar and HMS Sabre have spent nearly 30 years in service, operating in Northern Ireland in their early career and as guard ships with the Royal Navy’s Gibraltar Squadron from 2003 to late 2020.

Scimitar and Sabre returned to the UK two years ago from Gibraltar, with HMS Dasher and HMS Pursuer taking over duties on the overseas territory temporarily while the two modern replacement boats HMS Cutlass and HMS Dagger worked towards full operations.

Both Sabre and Scimitar started off their service in the Royal Navy under different names.

Scimitar was known as Grey Fox while Sabre was known as Grey Wolf during their stint on operations in Northern Ireland. They served as the Royal Marines’ patrol craft, having joined the fleet in 1993.

Almost a decade later, the pair were renamed and sent to Gibraltar, guarding the territory’s waters across 17 years.

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