Jane Dolby’s Fishwives Choir To Release Record

Fishwives Choir

Fishwives ChoirIn 2008 Jane Dolby’s husband, Colin, sailed out of Southend-on-Sea for a day of fishing and never returned. During the 8 months that he was missing – his body was eventually found – Jane fell into severe debt. She was unable to pay bills using his bank account or credit card, and as a result she had companies chasing her for money, refusing to believe that he was dead. She was left penniless. If it was not for the help of the Fisherman’s Mission she would have ended up bankrupt and possibly homeless. 

“The Fishermen’s Mission is the only fishermen’s charity that provides emergency support alongside practical and emotional care. We help all fishermen, active or retired, and their families.”

As the law stands at the moment, relatives cannot control the affairs of a missing person. A person needs to be registered as deceased before this can be done, and without a body this is not possible.

Jane fell “hopelessly into debt” and describes the help received from Fisherman’s Mission as incredible. She had to support her 4 children on no income and was entitled to no government support as her partner was not officially dead.

To help thank the mission, and to ensure that they can continue to operate, she has set up the Fishwives Choir, which consists of 70 women who are the wives, partners, daughters and mothers of fishermen all over the UK. Ladies singing come from as far afield as northern Scotland and the Isle of Man.

“Lots of people in the choir have lost men to the sea as well, so there’s a very strong bond between us.” Jane Dolby.

While Colin Dolby was missing credit card companies and banks hounded Mrs Dolby for payments. It was only when the media stepped in that they backed down.

The Fisherwives Choir

You can follow the Fisherwives Choir online:

You can still listen to an interview on BBC Radio Suffolk at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p013px5j – Jane Dolby and the choir are on at 1 hour 40 minutes in.

New Law On Presumption of Death

It is hoped that this will also raise awareness of the need to adopt a new law in which there can be a reduce period before presumption of death if a person is lost at sea. Currently 7 years must pass before a missing person will be considered dead.

This simple change in the law could ensure that wives and families survive should the family bread winner never return. It will allow people to claim on insurance policies, pay debts, execute wills and claim pensions.

For Those in Peril on the Sea

The record will feature the hyme, For Those in Peril on the Sea, which is from the traditional hymn, Eternal Father, Strong To Save.

Eternal Father, strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bidd’st the mighty ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep;
Oh, hear us when we cry to Thee,
For those in peril on the sea!

O Christ! Whose voice the waters heard
And hushed their raging at Thy word,
Who walkedst on the foaming deep,
And calm amidst its rage didst sleep;
Oh, hear us when we cry to Thee,
For those in peril on the sea!

Most Holy Spirit! Who didst brood
Upon the chaos dark and rude,
And bid its angry tumult cease,
And give, for wild confusion, peace;
Oh, hear us when we cry to Thee,
For those in peril on the sea!

O Trinity of love and power!
Our brethren shield in danger’s hour;
From rock and tempest, fire and foe,
Protect them wheresoe’er they go;
Thus evermore shall rise to Thee
Glad hymns of praise from land and sea.


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