Chichester mayor launches national Christmas card appeal

The launch of the Shipwrecked Mariners' Society's Christmas card appeal Picture: Kate Shemilt ks1500517-1
The launch of the Shipwrecked Mariners' Society's Christmas card appeal Picture: Kate Shemilt ks1500517-1

CHICHESTER mayor Peter Budge has helped a national charity to launch its Christmas card appeal.

Mr Budge met local volunteers at the Shipwrecked Mariners’ Society, in North Pallant, Chichester, yesterday.

Malcolm Williams, chief executive of the society, and Chichester mayor Peter Budge with some of the cards

Malcolm Williams, chief executive of the society, and Chichester mayor Peter Budge with some of the cards

The reception was held to launch the annual Christmas card appeal in support of seafarers in need across the UK.

The volunteers will be running the Christmas card shop at the charity’s Chichester premises, where it has been based for 44 years.

Mr Budge was given an insight into the society’s work on behalf of the seafaring community throughout the UK and Ireland over its 176-year history.

Commodore Malcolm Williams, chief executive, said: “We were delighted that the mayor of Chichester was able to launch our annual Christmas card appeal.

“This is the charity’s major annual fundraising campaign and the support we receive from people both locally and across the country enables us to continue helping those from the seafaring community who are desperately in need.

“All cards purchased and donations received will make a vital contribution towards our often life-changing work.”

This year’s collection of Christmas cards features many attractive maritime scenes along with more traditional and contemporary festive images. Other gift items on sale include a maritime themed calendar.

Profits will go directly to help those who have spent their lives at sea or who suffer the consequences of shipwreck – usually single-manned fishing vessels – and face difficult financial circumstances in retirement or as a result of accident or ill-health.

Founded in 1839 the society’s purpose is to provide financial help to merchant seafarers, fishermen and their dependants who are suffering hardship and distress. In the last year, grants totalling £1.4 million were given in 2,252 cases of need.

Visit the shop at 1 North Pallant, Chichester, 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday and from November 14, 10am to 1pm Saturday.

Cards can also be purchased online at www.shipwreckedmariners.org.uk.

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