Chinese seafarers drop-in event at Maritime Museum

20 April 2018 by Andrew

Blue Funnel vessel, Cyclops

Recent visitors to the Merseyside Maritime Museum will have noticed works taking place on the second floor where we’re developing what will become the new Sea Galleries. As part of this work, we’re looking for help from the Liverpool public to help tell the stories of the city’s unique maritime communities. On 26 April there will be a drop-in afternoon focused on finding out more about Liverpool’s Chinese seafarers. Deputy Director and Curator of Maritime History, Ian Murphy, talks about how the gallery needs the input from one of Liverpool’s oldest communities.

“One of the stories we’re keen to tell are those of the crews and passengers of Liverpool shipping over the last 300 years, and the team want to ensure that the diverse crews that worked from the city are represented. This includes the city’s Chinese seafarers, who are a key part of the city’s maritime heritage.

Chinese seafarers worked on Liverpool ships and helped to shape the unique nature of the city’s port communities. They served on Liverpool shipping through both World Wars and then faced forced repatriation in the aftermath of those conflicts, which had a profound effect on the lives of sailors and their families for decades afterwards. We want to explore general stories of Chinese seafarers’ careers, as well as the story of forced repatriations of sailors after the two World Wars.

We’re organising a drop in event on the 4th floor of the Museum, Thursday 26 April between 2 – 4pm, for anyone who has a story to tell about Liverpool’s Chinese sailors. If you are a friend or relative of one of the city’s Chinese seafarers, we’d love to meet you and hear your story. The team won’t be able to take any items / objects on the day, but would be happy to speak with people and see any photos or documents that you’re able to share.”

  1. Zoe Kwan says:

    I think the topic is a bit confused. The book was issued by Hong Kong British government. Before 1997, Hong Kong was a British colony, worldwide immigration departments count Hong Kong as a country. If you state Hongkongnese seafarers, it could be easier to obtain information.

  2. Natalie Chong says:


    I am just wondering if you are holding any other drop in sessions as I am unable to attend on Thursday due to work commitments. My dad and his brothers who are half Chinese went to sea with Blue Funnel.

(Comments are closed for this post.)

About our blog

Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.




We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.