QVSR Seafarers Centres, part of the Seamen’s Mission of the Methodist Church, is reopening its refurbished Immingham Seafarers Centre this week. A ceremony will take place on Friday at 11am to officially re-launch the centre.
The refurbishment project has cost in the region of £200,000, funded mainly by the UK Department for Transport (DfT) working in partnership with the Merchant Navy Welfare Board (MNWB). This funding sees the Immingham Seafarers Centre modernised to a standard that makes it one of the best examples of seafarer welfare facilities in Europe.
The funding comes as part of the UK Government’s commitment to the Maritime Labour Convention 2006 (MLC, 2006), which seeks to improve and develop maritime welfare services across the world. The newly refurbished centre offers 24-hour access with a new lounge as part of the improvements.
Alexander Campbell, CEO of QVSR SC, said: “QVSR is delighted to be at the helm of improving our seafarers’ centres welfare facilities here in the UK. There is a need for seafarers’ centres to maximise their use of technology to provide the very best connectivity for seafarers visiting our ports – this is what we are doing on the Humber.
“There is also a need to provide the very best modern spaces for seafarers to relax in, we believe that the Immingham Seafarers Centre sets the standards for such facilities, we want seafarers on ships berthing in the UK to experience the very best facilities, the Humber now has a first-class seafarers centre. There is a need for seafarers’ centres to provide 24 hour access, as ships and crew can arrive in port at any time. The Immingham Seafarers Centre will have a 24-hour seafarers lounge as part of the improvements.
QVSR is fully committed to driving forward with a programme of improvements that will see our seafarers centres here in the UK amongst the very best in the world. We would like to thank, DfT, MNWB and Associated British Ports for their support in making our vision a reality.”
UK Maritime Minister Lord Davies said: “Seafarers are the backbone of international trade and work long shifts – often months at sea away from their loved ones. When coming ashore, havens like the Immingham Seafarers Centre provide them the space to recharge and reconnect with their families. I’m delighted to see the centre will now stay open 24/7 thanks to Government funding.
“Since 2021, we’ve invested £2.2 million to protect the wellbeing of seafarers so centres like Immingham can ensure seafarers have a dedicated place to unwind.”
Stuart Rivers, CEO of MNWB which is the umbrella charity for the UK Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleets that represents 45 welfare charities across the maritime sector, said: “Much hard work has gone into the refurbishment of this centre to make it a first-class facility.
“Thousands of seafarers spend months away from their families working at sea which can be a very lonely and isolated place, with limited access to connectivity. But having a place to go when they visit a UK port, like Immingham, ensures seafarers can enjoy some much-needed downtime. And the 24-hour open access is a real perk!
“Welfare facilities for seafarers need constant review and this project will undoubtedly improve seafarers’ welfare. With that said, we are delighted to support it.”
Simon Bird, Regional Director for Associated British Ports (ABP) Humber ports said: “We welcome the investment in the Immingham Seafarers Centre. ABP is fully committed to working alongside QVSR as they seek to provide the very best welfare facilities here on the Humber.
“It’s the main focal point on the port for mariners and is a vital component to ensuring they feel comfortable when away from home. It is also well supported by our employees who will be grateful for the reopening.”