When news happens send us your pictures, video and views. Text BE to 80360 or contact us by email
HMS Portland re-dedicated at ceremony
SAILORS stood to attention as Portland’s namesake ship was re-dedicated at a special ceremony.
More than 200 family, friends and civic representatives joined the ship’s company for the service to mark the return of HMS Portland to duty after a refit.
They included representatives from Portland, including town councillors and members of the TS Penn cadets unit.
The type 23 frigate spent 12 months undergoing a weapon and sensors upgrade in Rosyth Royal Dockyard, Scotland. HMS Portland commanding officer Commander Sarah West addressed the ship’s company and explained how immensely proud she was to command HMS Portland.
She acknowledged that they were very keen to return to sea and complete sea trials before commencing an intensive period of training prior to preparations for deployment in 2014.
“I have the privilege to welcome you to HMS Portland’s rededication ceremony. It is a momentous day for the ship and her company as we look forward to sailing again to face the diverse challenges that Fleet and national tasking bring.”
She added: “Having joined Portland during her maintenance period, I have seen the full extent of her impressive regeneration.”
Some 200 friends, family and affiliates were present on this special day and the guest of honour was the ship sponsor, Lady Heather Brigstocke.
Lady Heather became the ship’s sponsor in 1999 when she launched HMS Portland. Her husband, Admiral Sir John Brigstocke was the Second Sea Lord at the time.
Lady Heather inspected ceremonial divisions with members of the ship’s affiliated cadet units, TS Penn, TS Swiftsure and Combined Cadet Force Bournemouth, parading alongside members of the crew.
Families of the ship’s company were joined by representatives of various organisations from their affiliated town of Portland, including members of the town council and comrades from the Wrens Society and Royal Navy Association.
The upgrade ensures that the ship is ready to be able to meet the United Kingdom’s varied commitments across the world.