All aboard as pirate-hunting destroyer HMS Dauntless cruises in

PIRATE HUNTING:  HMS Dauntless  will call into Portland this week

PIRATE HUNTING: HMS Dauntless will call into Portland this week

First published in News Dorset Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Features & entertainments writer

INVITED guests will get the chance to board a pirate-hunting destroyer when she calls in at Portland on Friday.

HMS Dauntless, one of the Royal Navy’s newest ships, arrives at 4pm on Friday and will remain in port until Sunday.

During her time at Portland, HMS Dauntless will play host to pre-invited guests on Friday evening for a ship’s capability demonstration, while on both Saturday and Sunday a number of local youth groups, including sea cadets from Portland, Tiverton, Bridport and Axbridge and girl guides and sea scouts will be given group tours.

Commanding Officer of HMS Dauntless, Commander Adrian Fryer said: “It is always a great pleasure to visit the area and I am looking forward to hosting our guests throughout the weekend.

“Portland is steeped in naval history.

“I know that my ship’s company is looking forward to chatting to our visitors and explaining more about the ship, the Royal Navy and the role we have in protecting our nation’s interests, both at home and further afield.”

HMS Dauntless, the second of the Type 45 destroyers, joined the fleet in November 2010, shortly after being the first of the class to fire the new Sea Viper missile.

Destroyers are part of the backbone of the Royal Navy, committed around the world 365 days a year hunting pirates, drug runners or submarines, defending the fleet from air attack and providing humanitarian aid after natural disasters.

They are designed to shield the fleet from air attack using the Sea Viper missile which can knock targets out of the sky up to 70 miles away if necessary.

The Type 45s can also be used as general-purpose warships with flight decks to accommodate helicopters up to the size of a Chinook.

There’s enough space on board to host a Royal Marines detachment up to 60-men strong.

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