H.M.S Seaham was a minesweeper built in 1942 following a fund raising effort by the community of Seaham. As part of the war effort communities were able to raise funds to buy their own warship for the Royal Navy.
Under Captain Robert Brett, H.M.S Seaham served with distinction, clearing mines from the channel for the invasion fleet, and capturing the Italian submarine, Bronzo, off Syracuse, Sicily. In December 1943, H.M.S Seaham sailed through the Bay of Biscay and rescued 62 survivors from the German blockade ship Alsterufer, which had been sunk by the Royal Air Force.
Following the war, H.M.S Seaham served as part of the Fisheries Protection Flotilla, until she was sold to Burma in 1947. H.M.S Seaham was sunk in 1948 by an uncharted Japanese mine.
Speaking at the unveiling of the memorial Grahame Morris said:
“I am immensely proud and honoured to be asked to unveil the memorial to H.M.S Seaham.
Seaham as well as the wider community have a close affinity to our Armed Forces. Historically our region has been a major recruiting area, which can be seen through the ways in which we honour and commemorate those who have served, from the restoration of the war memorial, to the pride we take in Tommy; the tribute at Seaham High School and now the memorial to H.M.S Seaham.
The history of H.M.S Seaham is fascinating and I must thank Dave McKenna and the Remember Them Fund for all their time, effort and research which has made this memorial possible.”