A YOUNG aviation enthusiast with autism will have his dream come true when a helicopter is named after him.

One of the helicopters at Heli Operations, on Portland, will be named after eight-year-old Finley Eckersley, from Easton, to honour his .

Finley's mum, Becky Eckersley, 37, said her son's love for all things flying came about after first visiting the company's operation base in Osprey Quay at the age of two.

She said: "We've been visiting the site since he was very young - and prior to the first lockdown, we used go three times a week.

"Finley has autism so he finds it difficult to talk to people, but his love for helicopters makes it is easier for him to interact with others, which as his mum is great to see.

"When he found out about the helicopter being named after him he was over the moon - it's a dream come true."

Renaming the chopper came about after Mrs Eckersley reached out to Heli Operations base manager Mick Sherry, who invited Finley to come to the site in the summer, while keeping to social distancing rules.

Mr Sherry said: "We invited the family for a look around and to see the aircraft close up - he showed great enthusiasm for our helicopters.

"The chopper we're renaming has been flying for six weeks now."

In total, the base has three aircrafts, with the others named Dara and Damien.

"In the summer, we had a third aircraft in the hangar, which at the time was in the process of being rebuilt, and at that time had no name," said Mr Sherry.

"We decided it would be fitting to name the aircraft after him."

Mrs Eckersley said her son is home schooled because he struggles in large groups, but his obsession for helicopters has made it easier for him to speak to people.

The aircraft will fly out to Bournemouth Airport to be resprayed on Monday morning.

Then Finley and his parents will be in attendance for the departure and again two weeks later for the arrival in new livery with the name 'Finley' clearly visible.

Heli Operations is a private firm, which trains German military pilots.

The Portland company bought all three aircrafts from the Royal Navy.