North P&I and Apostleship of the Sea spread Christmas cheer to seafarers

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North handed over 67 Christmas shoeboxes to Paul Atkinson, AoS Port Chaplain for Blyth & Tyne last Thursday (13th December). The shoeboxes, filled with essentials and treat items by North staff, will be distributed to seafarers over the festive period.

John Webb, Senior Executive (Claims) and Holly Hughes, Claims Executive at North P&I presented the parcels to Mr Atkinson.

Around 90% of world trade is transported by ship and seafarers may spend up to a year at a time away from home, separated from their family and loved ones. Their isolation and loneliness can be felt more acutely at Christmas.

Mr Webb commented: “We have been overwhelmed by the generosity of staff at North. Not only have we exceeded the number of shoeboxes that we were able to donate last year, but the quality and quantity of the gifts received has far exceeded our expectations.”

“Many of our colleagues are ex-seafarers and have always appreciated the Christmas gifts in a shoebox, something they say brought a smile to their face while celebrating Christmas on board,” he said.

Mr Atkinson said distributing Christmas presents to seafarers was one way of letting them know that they are not forgotten during this special time.

“People sometimes tend to forget the human element to shipping – seafarers – so this is a wonderful thank you gesture to let them know they are appreciated,” he said.

He added: “We would like to express our thanks to North P&I who have been great supporters of what we do for seafarers. It’s a great partnership.”

John Webb and Holly Hughes are pictured handing parcels to Paul Atkinson (in Santa hat).