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Christmas cheer for seafarers

Port chaplain Paul Atkinson with Belinda Ward, John Webb and Holly Hughes, from North P&I Club. Picture by David Allan
Port chaplain Paul Atkinson with Belinda Ward, John Webb and Holly Hughes, from North P&I Club. Picture by David Allan

Maritime groups have teamed up to spread some Christmas cheer to seafarers arriving at the ports of Blyth and Tyne.

Marine mutual liability insurer North P&I Club ahas donated 59 shoeboxes full of gifts which will be distributed by seafarers’ charity Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) over the festive period. 

The parcels were handed over by Belinda Ward, North P&I Club deputy director (claims) to Paul Atkinson, AoS port chaplain for Blyth and Tyne. 

Around 90 per cent of world trade is transported by ship and seafarers may spend up to a year at a time away from home.

Paul said: “We often forget that it is seafarers who bring us most of our Christmas presents in the first place, so this is a wonderful thank-you gesture to let them know they are appreciated.”

John Webb, North’s senior executive (claims) said: “The isolation and loneliness can be felt more acutely at Christmas time and here at North, we thought it would be a good idea to provide seafarers visiting local ports with a shoebox full of gifts at Christmas time.”