Merchant Navy Day

3rd September is Merchant Navy Day. While this date is most remembered as the day that WW2 commenced it is less known that, within hours of the declaration of war, the merchant vessel SS Athenia was torpedoed and with the loss of 128 lives. In the years that followed many more hundreds of merchant ships and many thousands more men were lost, just as nearly 2,500 vessels and more than 14,000 men were lost in WW1.

In memory of the loss of the SS Athenia 3rd September is enshrined as Merchant Navy Day.

Seafarers UK is a campaigning and grant-giving charitable organisation which wants to raise awareness of Merchant Navy Day and the scrifices made – and still being made – by those in the merchant Marine. You can find more about their organisation, and how you can help, at and at