Danish Seamen's Book of Reembrance

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Reference WMO256744

Address:

St. Nicholas' Cathedral,

St. Nicholas Square,

Newcastle upon Tyne

NE1 1PF

England

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Status: On subsequent site(s)
Type: Non freestanding
Location: Internal
Setting: Inside a building - public/private
Description: Roll of Honour or Book of Remembrance
Materials:
  • Paper Paper
Lettering: Painted
Conflicts:
  • Second World War (1939-1945)
About the memorial: The memorial is a book of remembrance held in a glass case at the east end of the north choir aisle. “On the morning of 9th April1940 the message came over the radio that Denmark and Norway had been occupied by the Germans, and no Dane abroad will ever forget the paralysing feeling of being completely cut off from his native country, and his family and friends at home. All Danish ships in British harbours and waters were put under British protection straight-away and sailed from then on under Allied flags with a Danish crew. Many Danish ships which were out on the oceans went to British harbours, others to neutral harbours, but most of the latter group joined the allied (British, American) service in time. In this way the seamen achieved the greatest contribution which Danes abroad were able to render to the Allied cause. Newcastle upon Tyne became the home of the Danish merchant fleet. The Danish Pool was opened in St. Nicholas Buildings, just opposite the Cathedral. It was here the seamen were sent when they landed in Britain, and from here they were sent out to sea again. Some 3000-4000 Danish seamen sailed out from Newcastle upon Tyne. After the war a new Danish Seamen’s church in Newcastle upon Tyne was consecrated on 30th April 1949 together with the memorial incorporating a book of remembrance containing the names in alphabetical order of the Danish season who lost their lives during the 1939-1945 war, starting with a deck-boy of sixteen years of age. Every day a page was turned in the remembrance book. Due to the increasingly fast turn-around of ships the number of Danish seamen with time on their hands diminished steadily, and it was eventually decided to close the Danish Seamen’s church in 1969. The remembrance book was placed on in the Danish Seamen’s church in London’s East End. In 1980 the Seamen’s church in London was faced with the same fortune as the church in Newcastle upon Tyne. The Danish congregation in Newcastle upon Tyne felt that Newcastle upon Tyne was the place the remembrance book rightly belonged. The congregation did not have its own church, so they contacted The Lord Mayor and the Provost of Newcastle at St. Nicholas Cathedral, who showed great sympathy and understanding. The result was that a new memorial was unveiled within two years, on l3th May 1982 in St. Nicholas Cathedral. The book of remembrance was then placed with this new memorial.
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