HMS Westminster returns to Portsmouth today

The fragment from the Union Jack believed to have flown on board HMS Victory at the Battle of Trafalgar. Credit: Sotheby's

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HMS Westminster is steaming for home in Portsmouth after a six-and-a-half month deployment to the Indian Ocean and the Gulf.

The Type 23 frigate divided her time between the Indian Ocean where she conducted counter-piracy and counter-narcotics patrols and the Gulf where she carried out maritime security patrols and exercises with allies.

The Royal Navy maintains a presence in the Indian Ocean and Gulf to protect the movements of sea traffic through some of the world’s most vital shipping lanes.

HMS Westminster will arrive back in Portsmouth today for sailors on board to be reunited with their families.

Captain Hugh Beard, the commanding officer of HMS Westminster, said: ‘This deployment has been a huge success in all the tasks we have undertaken throughout the region, from keeping the sea lanes safe, to etching the smiles on schoolchildren in Tanzania.

‘My ship’s company can be extremely proud of what they have achieved.’

The frigate will be passing the round tower at around 9.40am.