The Annual National Service for Seafarers 2024

The Annual National Service for Seafarers (ANSS), organised by The Seafarers’ Charity and Trinity House, will be held at St Paul’s Cathedral on Wednesday 9 October 2024 at 16:30.

The ANSS upholds a long and proud tradition, dating for over a century. Many who attend the Service have served at sea in conflict or perilous conditions or are present to honour the memory of an individual who has perished whilst serving this country, often a family member or former shipmate. Their intensely personal tribute is shared by those who may not have direct experience of the seafaring life themselves but who recognise the obligation of this island nation to honour the sacrifice and courage of those "that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters."

The great affection and loyalty attached to the Service derive hugely from the tradition and constancy that lie at its heart. Many of the congregation travel some distance and are of advancing years; they bring with them memories of family members and shipmates who have given their lives at sea in the service of this country. They derive great comfort and reassurance from the words and music that they hear, and from the shared experience of this Act of Remembrance.

The service is dedicated to seafarers from various maritime professions, including the Merchant and Royal Navies, fishing fleets, workboats, cruise liners, commercial shipping, yachts, ferries, and anyone who makes a living working at sea. One of the unique aspects of the ANSS is its ability to unite seafarers from all sectors of the maritime community. It extends beyond seafarers alone; the service also welcomes maritime welfare charities, nautical schools, maritime youth groups, veterans’ associations, and people of all faiths and nationalities.

The purpose of the ANSS is to recognise, celebrate, and express gratitude. Often, our reliance on seafarers is taken for granted or not fully appreciated, and this service serves as a reminder of their importance.

The ANSS is open to all, and it's free to attend. Seafarers from all countries, faiths, and backgrounds, as well as those who support them from ashore, are encouraged to join us in this solemn celebration.

We are looking forward to seeing you there.

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