A well-presented and finely detailed 1:192 scale Waterline Model of H.M.S Ajax as Fitted in 1939, modelled by John R. Haynes, with bespoke preformed hull, lined decks complete with highly detailed fittings and armament including studded chain, deck rails, superstructure with carley floats, bridge complete with telegraph, binnacles etc., search lamps, rangefinder, fitted ship's boats and assorted launches and other much fine detailing, set on a moulded and painted seascape within metal-bound glazed case, overall measurements -- 11¼ x 40¼ x 8½in. (28.5 x 102 x 22cm.)
In December 1939, three British cruisers - Ajax, Achilles and Exeter, under the command of Commodore Henry Harwood - formed one of various task forces searching the South Atlantic for the German pocket-battleship Graf Spee which had been preying on the Allied merchant shipping since soon after the War began. Harwood believed Graf Spee would be attracted to the busy shipping lanes off the estuary of the River Plate and his intuition proved uncannily accurate when he sighted his adversary on 13 December. Splitting his force to sail either side of Graf Spee, Harwood went into action immediately. Within half an-hour, all three of his cruisers had been damaged, with Exeter and Ajax so severely mauled that Harwood was forced to retire. Instead of pursuing his quarry when he was in a position either to defeat them or to escape, Captain Langsdorff took Graf Spee into the neutral port of Montevideo where he was allowed to remain for a few days. Believing that he was boxed in by a superior force which was growing by the day, Langsdorff took his ship out into the Plate estuary on 17 December and scuttled her. A somewhat hollow victory for the Royal Navy, the three cruisers had nevertheless fought valiantly against a much more powerful enemy whose sinking provided a sorely-needed boost to British morale as the War gathered momentum. Ajax was decomissioned in February 1948 and broken at Newport November 1949.