The chief officer of a ship anchored North of the Tyne has sent a thank you note to Apostleship of the Sea Tyne port chaplain Paul Atkinson who visited the crew and delivered presents over Christmas.
The vessel, MV Ikan Luding, arrived in Tyne in early December, and has been anchored North of the Tyne since that time while its seafarers on board await instructions about their next job.
On Christmas Eve, Paul visited the crew at anchorage with the assistance of local Harbour Master Steve Clapperton and their boat crew.
Paul wanted to find out if the men needed support and to deliver 27 Christmas shoeboxes, donated by local churches, groups and Newcastle-based marine insurer North P&I Club.
In an email the ship’s chief officer wrote, “We Seafarer from Mv Ikan Luding sending our warmest Greetings of Merry Christmas to all the staff of AOS Newcastle. Appreciated much your generosity of sending us box of gifts though we are distantly anchored here in Tyne, UK. Many thanks and God will return in thousand folds your kindness.”
Paul said the Filipino crew are all fine and well-provided for.
“They are waiting to find out when and where their next job will take them. They are a little anxious and bored, as the waiting can be unbearable, but they keep themselves busy doing routine maintenance such as painting.
“It is also frustrating for the crew to be so near dry land yet not be able to go ashore. Our visit helped lift their spirits. They now know that there are people here who care and are ready to help,” said Paul.