PORTLAND'S namesake naval warship has docked at the island's port ahead of a four day visit to the borough.

HMS Portland arrived this morning and will host civic receptions, local dignitaries and youth organisations on the ship before it sets sail again on Monday.

During its visit, the sailors will also take part in remembrance services in Weymouth and on Portland on Sunday morning.

It is the Type 23 frigate's first visit to the port since June 2013 and it is the first visit since the ship underwent a multi-million pound upgrade.

The ship returned to British shores in August after a seven-month deployment in the Caribbean and Atlantic, where it helped ports build their maritime facilities and also helped the US Coastguard combat drug smugglers.

It is Captain Simon Asquith's first visit to Portland after he took over command of the warship two months ago.

Previously a submariner, Captain Asquith took control following the departure of the ship's former commander Cmdr Sarah West, after it was claimed she had an affair with a crew member.

Captain Asquith said: “It's fantastic to be on Portland.

“I have only been in command for two months, it's my first time on Portland but a lot of my crew have been here before and they say they always receive a very warm welcome.

“There's something special about bringing a ship into its namesake port.”

The ship, measuring 133-metres long and a water displacement of more 4,200 tonnes, was launched in 2001 and is the 8th Navy Warship to be named HMS Portland.

During it's time at the port the ship's crew will take part in the remembrance services in the borough.

Forty of the crew will stay on Portland and attend the service at the cenotaph, and more than 100 will march through Weymouth on Sunday morning as part of the remembrance parade.

Captain Asquith added: “We are all looking forward to hosting local dignitaries and the youth organisations on board, but the main reason we are here is for Remembrance Sunday.

“It is particularly poignant this year with it being 100 years since the First World War started and the fact that troops have been withdrawn from Afghanistan.

"It is great that we can be here on Portland to commemorate those who gave their lives so that we can live in a safe and comfortable country.

“To be able to bring HMS Portland back here, especially this weekend, is a fantastic opportunity.”

One of the sailors on the ship, 24-year-old Dorset-based Seaman Specialist Bill Sayer, was returning to his home port. He said: “This is the first ship I have been on and everyone on board has been really helpful.

“It's my local ship and coming to my local port is great so I'm happy about that.”