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Archbishop sets sail in remembrance ceremony to those who died at sea

PUBLISHED: 17:43 08 November 2018 | UPDATED: 17:43 08 November 2018

The Archbishop of Canterbury meets crew members from the Caister lifeboat. Picture: Neil Didsbury

The Archbishop of Canterbury meets crew members from the Caister lifeboat. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Archant

The Archbishop of Canterbury took to the waves to lay a wreath in memory of those who have died at sea.

On the second day of his visit to Norfolk, the Most Rev Justin Welby greeted members 
of Caister Lifeboat before entering the shed for a formal ceremony, attended by schools 
and the public.

Paul Garrod, crewman and chairman of Caister Lifeboat, said: “Today has been absolutely fantastic, not only a great occasion for Caister Lifeboat but for the village as well.”

The ceremony saw children from Caister Junior School re-enact the Beauchamp lifeboat disaster where nine men lost their lives attempting to respond to a distress signal in November 1901.

The archbishop boarded the Bernard Matthews II lifeboat and set sail in to the North Sea.

The Archbishop of Canterbury takes a moment to enjoy the seals off the Caister coast. Picture: Neil DidsburyThe Archbishop of Canterbury takes a moment to enjoy the seals off the Caister coast. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Passengers on the boat went to the seal colony at Scroby Sands before laying an all natural wreath into the sea.

The archbishop described his experience on the boat as exhilarating and impressive and reminisced about his memories of Norfolk.

“Growing up, I would go and see the Cromer boat and I have sailed from when I was five, so being out in boats is part of life.”

On day two of his visit the archbishop also visited St Mary’s Church in Happisburgh, Peterhouse Primary Academy in Gorleston, The Pathway Cafe in Great Yarmouth, the James Paget University Hospital and serving fish and chips at Great Yarmouth Minister.

The Most Rev Justin Welby on baord the Caister lifeboat. Picture: Neil DidsburyThe Most Rev Justin Welby on baord the Caister lifeboat. Picture: Neil Didsbury

At Happisburgh he climbed the church tower and spent several minutes surveying the scene.

To a packed church, he also prayed for the people and businesses along the coast threatened by coastal erosion, which he said was “unjust, unfair and wrong”.

He said: “We protest against those that do not care for the environment, just make money and look after their own interests. And we seek a change in government opinion and a determination to protect communities and look after people.”

In a lighter moment, when asked about whether he liked Norwich City, the archbishop joked: “I don’t follow cricket.”

'Emotionally moving and profoud' The Archbishop of Canterbury describes laying a wreath to commemorate those who have died at sea in times of war. Picture: Neil Didsbury'Emotionally moving and profoud' The Archbishop of Canterbury describes laying a wreath to commemorate those who have died at sea in times of war. Picture: Neil Didsbury

“I wouldn’t call myself a football supporter but I am always happy when they win.”

On the final day of his stay on Friday he will have breakfast at Blakeney, visit Walsingham Shrine and sing with children at Lynn Minster.

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