Huntingdon Sea Sunday Service, 13 July 2014

On Sunday 13 July, shipmates form Huntingdon & District Branch attended the annual Sea Sunday Service at the War Memorial.

‘On Sea Sunday churches all over the world come together to remember seafarers and pray for them, their families and those who support them. The Mission to Seafarers needs your prayers and support for all merchant crews and their families on Sea Sunday 2014, to continue our vital work for those in need.’1

The annual Sea Sunday service takes place outside Huntingdon's Town Hall in front of the War Memorial
The annual Sea Sunday service takes place outside Huntingdon’s Town Hall in front of the War Memorial

Shipmates Bill Small, Karl Webb, Pete Aston, and Graham & Becky Murray, represented the Branch.

Shipmates Pete Aston, Graham Murray, Becky Murray, and Bill Small prepare for the service
Shipmates Pete Aston, Graham Murray, Becky Murray, and Bill Small prepare for the service
S/Ms Pete Aston, Bill Small, Graham Murray, and Karl Webb - booted and suited
S/Ms Pete Aston, Bill Small, Graham Murray, and Karl Webb – booted and suited

The event in Huntingdon was organised by Colonel Derek Bristow, Deputy Lieutenant of Cambridgeshire (although this was in his role as CEO Federation of Merchant Mariners, and Chair of Cambs MNA), VIPs included the Chairman of HDC, Cllr Alan Mackender and the Mayor of Huntingdon, Cllr Bill Hensley, as well as former seafarers and their families.

Seafarers gather around the War Memorial
Seafarers gather around the War Memorial

The ceremony is usually an informal affair, started off with an introduction and welcome by Derek Bristow.

Col Derek Bristow welcomes all attendees
Col Derek Bristow welcomes all attendees

The next part of the service was to recognise the service of our veterans of the Second World War, one was presented a Merchant Navy ‘red duster’ veterans badge (based on the badge awarded to former military personnel).

Photograph opportunity with the Mayor of Huntngdon
Photograph opportunity with the Mayor of Huntngdon

The ceremony continued with prayers, a minutes silence, and the laying of wreaths.

The Mayor of Huntingdon lays a wreath in memory of all seafarers
The Mayor of Huntingdon lays a wreath in memory of all seafarers

Although only a short, informal, service, it is important to remember seafarers throughout the world, and of the dangers they face in both war and peace.

On completion of the service, all guests were invited into the Town Hall for refreshments and to ‘spin a few dits’ of the time we have spent at sea (or in the air in some cases).

  1. Mission to Seafarers Official Website, Available from http://www.seasunday.org/about-sea-sunday  []