Merchant Navy Day

Saluting the flag
Saluting the flag



SEAFARERS past and present were commemorated with a flag-raising ceremony outside Woking’s Civic Offices on Saturday.

Veterans from the Royal Naval Association, Standard Bearers from the Merchant Navy and representatives from Woking Sea Cadets joined the Mayor of Woking  Anne Murray, her consort Michael Smith and Douglas Spinks, Deputy Chief Executive of the council, outside the Civic Offices to mark Merchant Navy Day and raise awareness of Britain’s ongoing dependence on Merchant Navy seafarers.

Councillor Murray read a special message of support from HRH The Earl of Wessex KG GCVO before the Red Ensign was proudly raised high above the Gloucester Square council offices.

Seafarers UK president, HRH The Earl of Wessex, had endorsed the campaign, saying: “I very much hope you will support this campaign to remember the sacrifices, salute the courage and support the future of the often unsung personnel of our Merchant Navy.”

Cllr Murray, added: “As an island nation, we pride ourselves on our rich maritime heritage. It is very important to mark Merchant Navy Day and pay tribute to the many brave men and women who have lost their lives over the years during conflict and in peace time tragedies.”

Merchant Navy Day has been observed in the UK since 2000. The campaign to ‘Fly the Red Ensign’ started last year to remind UK citizens – none of whom live more than 70 miles from the sea – that they depend on Merchant Navy seafarers for 95% of imports.


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