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Sailors’ Society marks 200th anniversary at cathedral

His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent spoke about his family's connections with the charity

His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent was among guests at Southwark Cathedral marking the 200th anniversary of Sailors’ Society.

In all, more than 500 attended the service to honour the founding of the world’s oldest maritime welfare charity in 1818.

Sailors’ Society was founded in London to help seafarers returning home from the Napoleonic Wars. Now, based in Southampton, the charity supports the world’s 1.6million seafarers and their families. WesCom Signal and Rescue is among its supporters.

Prince Michael (pictured) says, “The charity has been at the forefront of innovative maritime welfare for two centuries and changed many hundreds of thousands of lives for the better.” After the service, he signed a copy of the charity’s new book, 200 stories from the sea.

A new anthem, They that go down to the sea in ships, was composed by Malcolm Archer for the anniversary. It was performed by the Winchester College Chapel Choir.

Maritime Minister Nusrat Ghani MP says, “For 200 years, Sailors’ Society has supported seafarers, their families and maritime communities, right across the globe and often at the hardest times for them.

“From building storm shelters and schools to helping families stay connected while loved ones are at sea and offering support, the organisation is a crucial part of the maritime industry and I’m sure it will continue to be so for centuries to come.”

Stuart Rivers, Chief Executive Officer of Sailors’ Society, says, “The service was a truly remarkable occasion with staff, trustees, industry supporters, volunteers, our chaplains from around the world and donors all gathered to celebrate an amazing achievement.”

May 02, 2018