Merchant Navy Day, 03 September 2016, was celebrated at various ports around New Zealand. In Wellington, a service was held in the Hall of Memories, National War Memorial attended by 12o invited guests. Outside the New Zealand Red Ensign was flown together with the New Zealand National Flag. Twelve flags were paraded into the service including two from past NZ shipping companies. A number of wreaths were laid including one from the NZ Company of Master Mariners.
In the United Kingdom the Chamber Of Shipping CEO, Guy Platten has welcomed the announcement today of the recipients of the Merchant Navy Medal for Meritorious Service; “I am delighted to congratulate all the recipients of this new national award. It is testament to the great dedication which they have shown throughout their careers and their commitment to the industry in which they work.
“That the medal is now a national award is recognition of the commitment and dedication of seafarers, and the contribution of the shipping and maritime industries to our island nation.”
Recipients of the medal have received the award for a range of meritorious service including: providing operational achievement through leadership, management and sensitivity in a migrant rescue in the Mediterranean in 2015; dedication to seafarer training and removing barriers for those entering the industry; devotion to welfare work and fundraising support to maritime charities and young seafarers.
Commenting on the announcement the Shipping Minister, John Hayes remarked “Merchant Navy seafarers and those serving in the fishing fleets give a tremendous service to our island nation and it is only right that they are recognised for the vital role they play, often in difficult and dangerous conditions. Coinciding with Merchant Navy Day, it provides an opportunity to remember the sacrifices of our brave seafarers of the past and to show our appreciation for British shipping today and in the future.”
David Dingle CBE, Chairman of Maritime UK remarked “Congratulations to all the well deserving recipients – the new national award is fitting recognition of the dedication and achievements of the recipients and their service to the UK maritime industries. This national award is also testament to the importance of our sector and those who work within it, to our island nation as a vital part of our heritage and of our modern economy – supporting jobs, driving innovation and enabling trade.”
The recipients of the medals are:
· Captain R H Barker, for services to the Merchant Navy.
· Mr L A J Dalrymple, for services to the welfare of seafarers.
· Captain S Harrison, for services to the shipping and ports industries.
· Captain N J Jeffery, for services to the promotion of Merchant Navy careers.
· Mr G T Jones, for services to the Merchant Navy and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.
· Mr R J Jones, for services to the welfare of seafarers.
· Captain P J McArthur, for services to the Merchant Navy.
· Captain D S McCallum, for services to the Merchant Navy.
· Captain N McIntyre, for services in the rescue of refugees.
· Mr M F Morgan, for services to the Merchant Navy and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.
· Captain P D Peters, for services to the welfare of seafarers.
· Captain P Rentell, for services to the Merchant Navy.
· Captain R Towner, for services to seafarer certification and training.
The Merchant Navy Medal (MNM) has been awarded annually by the industry for meritorious service since it was established in 2005. This year following a campaign by the awarding committee, the medal has been elevated to become an official State Award, supported by a Royal Warrant and a ceremony for the recipients will take place in November at Trinity House.