Day of the Seafarer

Day of the Seafarer Quick Facts - GB

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2024 Date25 June 2024
2025 Date25 June 2025

Day of the Seafarer

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Day of the Seafarer History

The Day of the Seafarer is an annual global event that celebrates the essential role that seafarers play in maintaining the global economy and preserving the environment. This observance highlights the contributions, courage, and sacrifices made by seafarers, who transport approximately 90% of the world's trade. The day also aims to raise awareness on the importance of their well-being and the need to ensure their safety and security while navigating the world's oceans.

The Day of the Seafarer was established in 2011 by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), which works extensively to ensure that seafarers are treated fairly and with respect. The United Kingdom, as an island nation with a rich maritime history and a significant contributor to the global merchant shipping industry, should recognise and appreciate the immense value of these professional sailors. The British maritime workforce has played, and continues to play, a crucial role in facilitating international trade, supporting the maritime sector, and contributing to the United Kingdom's economic growth.

Across the United Kingdom, events and activities organised by various maritime organisations celebrate the Day of the Seafarer. These may include open days at ports, maritime museums, and training institutes as well as conferences, seminars, and discussions on the importance of seafarer's welfare and safety. Social media campaigns, using the hashtag #SeafarersDay, also provide a platform for maritime communities and the public to express their gratitude and support to seafarers. The Day of the Seafarer is observed globally on the 25th of June, marking a unique opportunity for the United Kingdom to demonstrate its appreciation and commitment to the well-being of its seafaring community.

Day of the Seafarer facts

  • The theme for Day of the Seafarer in 2024 was Navigating the future: safety first!.
    In 2023 the theme was MARPOL at 50 – Our commitment goes on.
  • Worldwide, only about 2% to 10% of maritime containers are inspected.
  • In 2020, the day took on special significance because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many seafarers were stranded at sea due to travel restrictions, which prevented crew changes, and led to significant international attention to their plight.
  • The United Kingdom has approximately 50,000 seafarers in its workforce.
  • British seafarers have played pivotal roles in exploration, trade, and naval warfare. Some of the most famous British seafarers include Sir Francis Drake, Captain James Cook, and Admiral Lord Nelson.

Top things to do in the UK for Day of the Seafarer

  • Learn more about the issues seafarers are facing.
  • Browse the International Maritime Organization's publications and learn more about the maritime industry and seafarers.
  • Participate in events or donate to charities dedicated to supporting seafarers and their families, such as the Seafarers UK and Sailor's Society.
  • Visiting the Royal Navy Museum in Portsmouth. The museum showcases the history of the Royal Navy and its sailors, with exhibits on famous ships and naval battles.

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