On January 1, 2017, Seafarers UK, celebrated the start of its Centenary Year. To mark this anniversary, Seafarers UK is holding a number of special Centenary events around the UK during 2017, in Liverpool, Bristol, Glasgow and London.
On March 28, exactly 100 years to the day since the first meeting was held in 1917 in the City of London to discuss the formation of the charity (previously known as King George’s Fund for Sailors), Seafarers UK will hold a Centenary Celebration Dinner at Guildhall.
The evening, sponsored by Ruffer LLP, will involve a drinks reception, a splendid three-course dinner, music by the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines, speeches and a special auction. Former Head of the Royal Navy, Admiral Lord West of Spithead is the celebrated after-dinner speaker.
‘Congratulations to Seafarers UK on reaching its Centenary’ said Lord West. ‘I am honored to speak at this very special event at Guildhall and to help highlight and mark 100 years of welfare support for seafarers in need, and their families, by the leading charity for the entire maritime sector.’
‘The make-up and capability of the UK’s maritime sector has changed dramatically since 1917, and whilst we are still very much an island nation, with serving seafarers in the Royal Navy, Merchant Navy and the Fishing Fleets, the numbers of those actively involved is reducing every year. And I fear that with the continued lack of investment in our Royal Navy, and the ever reducing number of UK cadets entering the increasingly global Merchant Navy, the UK will be left behind as other major nations build up their maritime capabilities, unless more is done to reverse this decline.’
‘Within this context, there is a very important and continued role for Seafarers UK to play, both in helping to raise awareness of the need for, and existence of, training and job opportunities in the maritime sector, and in helping those still serving, but increasingly veterans and ex-seafarers, who have fallen on hard times, and their families.’