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        HMS Portland

        HMS Portland, the fastest and most fearless Type 23 frigate in the Royal Navy. She is one of the youngest Type 23 frigates in the Royal Navy and was built on the Clyde. She was launched by the Ship’s Sponsor, Lady Heather Brigstocke on 15 May 1999. HMS Portland was commissioned into the Royal Navy on 3 May 2001.

        craignez honte - Fear Dishonour

        Ship's Motto
        HMS Portland

        HMS Portland is currently deployed as the Atlantic Patrol Ship.

        During this seven month deployment HMS Portland will undertake maritime security operations, including counter-narcotics and anti-piracy patrols, providing opportunities to work with other navies to strengthen ties and demonstrate the Royal Navy’s commitment to the region.

        HMS Portland completed a twelve month refit period in December 2012. During 2013 HMS Portland conducted an extensive period of sea trials in which the ship demonstrated the capability of her advanced weapon and sensor systems.

        On completion she successfully completed intensive sea training in order to prepare for the Atlantic patrol deployment.


        I am very much looking forward to getting this fantastic ship back to sea to put her through her paces. The ship is equipped for the many future challenges which greet the modern Fleet and we are ready to be with her every step of the way.

        Sarah West

        Commander Sarah West
        HMS Sheffied, HMS Somerset
        Military experience

        Commander Sarah West was born and educated in Lincolnshire. She graduated from the University of Hertfordshire with an Honours Degree in Mathematics prior to joining Britannia Royal Naval College in September 1995 as a Warfare Officer. Initial training appointments included HMS Battleaxe, HMS Sandown and HMS Sheffield deployed in the Gulf.

        Selected as a small ship navigator, she joined HMS Cottesmore in 1997. Subsequent appointments included Officer of the Watch of HMS Sheffield and Navigating Officer of HMS Somerset.

        After attending Initial Staff Course and successfully completing the Principal Warfare Officers’ (PWO) Course, specialising in under water warfare, she joined HMS Cornwall as the PWO(U) in 2003. Her short time on board included a number of international exercises including a deployment to the eastern Atlantic. She then joined HMS Norfolk as the Operations Officer in 2004. Her time in Norfolk provided a full and varied programme and ended with her serving as the Executive Officer in the run up to the Ship’s decommission.

        Sarah was appointed to the Commander Amphibious Task Group in 2005 as the under water warfare specialist. This included the planning and execution of exercises around the world, including a NATO Reaction Force (NRF) deployment and the evacuation from Beirut.

        She joined the staff of the Permanent Joint Head Quarters, based in Northwood, in 2007. For the first part of her appointment she was responsible for co-ordinating the UK contribution to operations in the Balkans, which included the period that saw Kosovo’s declaration of Independence. She then joined the Middle East Operations Team, where her responsibilities included co-ordinating the maritime contribution to Operation Telic in Iraq. During this time she also achieved an Honours Degree in Law.

        Selected for sea command in 2008, she commanded HMS Ramsey, HMS Penzance, HMS Pembroke and HMS Shoreham of the First Mine Counter Measures Squadron, between April 2009 and December 2011. The time on HMS Pembroke included eight and a half months deployed on operations in the Arabian Gulf.

        She was promoted to commander in January 2012 and assumed command of HMS Portland in May 2012.




        Portland visits São Tomé and Príncipe
        07 April 2014

        HMS Portland became the first Royal Navy Ship to visit...

        Portland welcomes King Neptune
        Portland welcomes King Neptune
        28 March 2014

        Crossing the equator at 0° Latitude, 0° Longitude, HMS Portland...

        HMS Portland hosts President of Sierra Leone
        12 March 2014

        Royal Navy warship HMS Portland pulled out all the stops...

        HMS Portland visits Lagos
        03 March 2014

        Plymouth based HMS Portland has demonstrated the UK’s commitment to...


        Operation Atlantic Patrol South

        CURRENT STATUS: active

        The South Atlantic Patrol is the Navy's standing commitment to UK overseas territories, Commonwealth countries and other friendly nations in the South Atlantic in order to reassure and maintain a sovereign presence around the South Atlantic.



        In maintenance: Currently undergoing an upkeep period to prepare the ship for continued duties with the Fleet by maintaining and improving our engines, weapons and communications systems.


        Weapons System

        Type 23 Weapons System
        type 23
        • 4.5Mk8 Gun
          medium calibre weapon system
          Mk8 4.5 Gun

          If you're looking for punch and firepower, then the 4.5in main gun, found on the forecastle of all the Royal Navy's destroyer's frigates and destroyers, is the most obvious provider. Even in an age of missiles, there's still a need for a weapon to pulverise enemy positions and demoralise the foe - and the 4.5in gun has done so in the Falklands and Iraq. The gun can fire up to two dozen high explosive shells weighing more than 40kg (80lbs) at targets more than a dozen miles away - and nearly 18 miles if special extended-range shells are used. In various forms, the 4.5in has been the Navy's standard medium gun since before World War 2, embodied today by the Mk8 which has been in service since the early 1970s. There are two types of Mk8 used by the Fleet. The older Mod 0 (with its curved turret), which is gradually being replaced, and the angular Mod 1 (nicknamed Kryten after the robot on the sci-fi sitcom Red Dwarf) which is harder for enemy radar to pick up. The main purpose of the gun is Naval Gunfire Support – artillery bombardment of shore targets. In this role the gun is capable of firing the equivalent of a six-gun shore battery. The Mk8 can also be used effectively against surface targets at sea.

        • Harpoon
          Anti-ship missile System

          Harpoon is the long-range lance of the Type 23 frigate, capable of destroying enemy ships far beyond the horizon. Fitted to all Type 23 Frigates, the Boeing (formerly McDonnell Douglas) Harpoon is a sophisticated anti-ship missile capable of striking at targets more than 80 miles away. Harpoon uses a combination of inertial guidance and active radar homing to attack its prey. Cruising at Mach 0.9 and carrying a large high explosive warhead it is powered by a lightweight turbojet, but is accelerated at launch by a booster rocket.

        • Helicopter
          Airbourne weapons System

          The Merlin Mk1 have been in service with the Fleet Air Arm since the late 1990s and, after thorough testing and evaluation, the helicopters have been on the front line since 2000. Our job is to find – and if necessary destroy – enemy submarines using our state-of-the-art sonar bouys which we drop into the ocean and Sting Ray torpedoes. Beyond searching for submarines, we carry out traditional maritime helicopter duties: anti-piracy/drug-running patrols, surveillance and reconnaissance, search and rescue, and passenger and load transfers

        • Sea Wolf
          Surface to Air Missile system
          Sea wolf

          Seawolf is the shield of Britain’s frigate fleet against air attack. Defending Britain's frigate fleet against air attack, the Seawolf missile has been in service for more than 30 years and has proven itself in action in the Falklands. Unlike Sea Viper and Sea Dart, Seawolf is intended to defend an individual ship rather than a task group, engaging aircraft or sea-skimming missiles. It is fired either from a vertical silo on Type 23 frigates, and guided on to its target courtesy of a tracking system on the ship. The original Seawolf had a very limited range of just six miles, but the frigate fleet is in the middle of receiving the latest, more potent version of the missile system. It means that Seawolf can track – and destroy – a target the size of a cricket ball travelling at three times the speed of sound well beyond the limit of the original missile. If the system was placed in the middle of London, it could track its target over the M25 and knock it out of the sky over the North Circular - and the whole action would last under 20 seconds. Each Type 23 frigate carries out at least two Seawolf firings on ranges off the UK coast before each deployment.

        • DLH Decoy Launch System
          active decoy system

          The DLH system is carried by the Navy's frigates and is designed to lure attacking anti-ship missiles away from the unit.

        • Torpedo
          Magazine torpedo launch System (MTLS)

          Dropped by Lynx and Merlin helicopters, and launched from the MTLS, Sting Ray is a small lightweight torpedo designed to destroy enemy submarines. It weighs seven times less than torpedoes fired by submarines, racing through the water at more than 50mph at targets half a dozen miles away, delivering a 100lb explosive charge powerful enough to punch through the double hulls of modern submarines. Once Sting Ray is fired it uses the information provided initially by the helicopter and gathers fresh intelligence on its target using its sonar and onboard software which is designed not to be fooled by the enemy submarine’s decoys.

        • Towed Array
          Sub Surface detection system
          towed array

        • 30mm Gun
          Medium Calibre gun system
          30mm Gun















        Top Speed


        Range (Nautical)


        Launch Date


        Commissioned date


        Cups of Tea during deployment


        TAKE A LOOK




        HMS Portland HISTORY

        • Portland is born

          The Portland story begins in 1653 with a 50-gunner which served for four decades and saw extensive action in wars with the Dutch and French. The ship was burned in 1692 near Malaga to prevent her falling into French hands.

        • Battle Honours

          Four Days’ Battle 1666 Orfordness 1666

        • The Second Portland

          It did not take long for the Portland name to be resurrected in 1693. The vessel served for 50 years, helping to recapture HMS Coventry from the French in 1709. She was broken up in 1743.

        • Battle Honours

          ‘Coventry’ 1709

        • The Third Portland

          Portland No.3 was a 50 gunner and saw repeated action against the French in the 1740s and 1750s in the Channel, Mediterranean and North America. She was sold out of the navy in 1763.

        • Battle Honours

          ‘Auguste’ 1746

        • Battle Honours

          Ushant 1747

        • Battle Honours

          ‘Magnanime’ 1748

        • Battle Honours

          Lagos 1759 Quiberon Bay 1759

        • The Fourth Portland

          The fourth bearer of the name was also a 50 gunner and was launched in 1770. She had the distinction of carrying home Captain Cook’s vital journals and charts from his Pacific expedition of 1769. She also saw action during the American Wars of Independence. She was sold in 1817.

        • The Fifth Portland

          The fifth Portland was a converted river barge which was purchased in 1795 and briefly used to defend Plymouth during the Napoleonic Wars before she was sold in 1802.

        • The Sixth Portland

          The final Portland from the days of sail was a 52-gunner, which spent 40 years in service, including a stint as flagship of the Pacific Station.

        • The Seventh Portland

          It was in the Far East too that the seventh Portland took shape. She was a minesweeper laid down in 1941 in Hong Kong; she was still being built when the Japanese captured the colony that December. She was sunk by the Americans in 1945.

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