Who We Are

The Watch Ashore is not just a social organisation providing support and friendship to partners and families of Merchant Navy personnel. In 1933 The Watch Ashore was formed to lobby for reforms in the Merchant Navy and today, the reforms we are lobbying for are remarkably similar to 80 years ago - better conditions for the Merchant Navy, better safety and better training.

Our members are the wives, widows, partners, mothers, sisters and daughters of all Merchant Navy personnel and for anyone with an interest in matters to do with the Merchant Navy. We have members across the UK, and for those not living close to a branch we have Country membership

The Committee

Organisation The Watch Ashore is spear headed by the National Executive Committee, which is made up of Chairman, Vice Chairman, Hon. Treasurer, and Hon General Secretary.

Read more on the Committee >>


1933 – Today

“The Honourable Mrs. Nelson-Ward was keenly interested in these discussions [ on improvement in the conditions of Merchant Navy officers ] and often said to her husband that the wives and mothers of officers would be only too eager to help in the cause of reform, could this be possible. The Admiral declared that such assistance would be more than welcome if a way could be found to organize and use it.”

Read more on the history of The Watch Ashore >>