February 8, 2017
Royal Navy frigate HMS Portland will visit Freetown today for a four day visit to build on the strong friendship enjoyed by Sierra Leone and the United Kingdom.
The four day visit will enable continued cooperation between the nations on a number of maritime security issues.
Later this week, members of Portland’s seamanship team will join the Sierra Leone Maritime Wing and Sierra Leone Police (Marine) ashore for some joint training in boat handling and advanced seamanship techniques.
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A team of volunteers from Portland will also head inland to the Heavenly Homes and Saint Georges Foundation Orphanages to help with some decorating and basic repairs.
HMS Portland is one of thirteen Type 23, Duke Class frigates serving in the Royal Navy; the mainstay of the surface fleet in the modern Royal Navy. Portland, which last visited Sierra Leone in 2014, is coming to the end of a nine-month deployment having departed the UK in June last year. Since leaving she has travelled over 37,000 miles through the North and South Atlantic, Mediterranean Sea, Indian Ocean, Pacific Ocean and Southern Ocean. Her tasking has been varied but always revolved around the theme of maritime security. Visits to the African continent have included Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Simon’s Town, South Africa.
The Ship’s Commanding Officer, Captain Paul Stroude (43), said: “My Ship’s Company and I are really looking forward to visiting Sierra Leone; our countries have an exciting future working together. We share the same aim of enforcing the international law of the sea and I think we can learn a lot from each other.”