UK to hold remembrance service for offshore oil and gas workers

A special church service will take place in Aberdeen for all those who have lost their lives while working in the UK offshore oil and gas industry over the years.

The representative body for the UK offshore oil and gas industry, Oil & Gas UK, said that its Chaplaincy’s service of remembrance, held annually, would take place on Saturday, November 5, from 11 am at The Kirk of St. Nicholas Uniting in Union Street.

This years’ service takes place a day before the 30th anniversary of industry’s worst aviation accident where 43 passengers and two crew members died when a British International Helicopters’ Boeing 234LR Chinook helicopter crashed while approaching Sumburgh Airport.

The service will include the lighting of a large candle for all the men and women who have died offshore since the industry began some 50 years ago.

Also, a candle will then be lit for each of the four men who lost their lives in 2016 while the Chinook tragedy will be remembered with the lighting of an additional candle.

Oil & Gas UK said that Reverend Pauline Nixon, whose husband was killed in the 1986 Chinook crash, will deliver a short address.

Service for the Act of Remembrance will open with a lone piper playing a lament, followed by the names read aloud of those who have died offshore during the last year. It will close with a minute’s silence.

The Reverend Gordon Craig, Chaplain to the UK offshore oil and gas industry who will officiate proceedings, said: “It is really important for families to realize their loved ones are still being remembered and respected by the industry. The service is an opportunity to commemorate all those no longer with us.

“Thirty years on from the Chinook crash may seem like a long time, but the memories are still vivid for those who lost their loved ones suddenly and tragically. The pain may be more manageable, but there will still be times when the loss is felt deeply.”

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