Skip to main content
  1. Home
  2. What's On
  3. Songs of the Sea and Anchorage: A celebration of the working sailor life of the River Thames and its docks

Songs of the Sea and Anchorage: A celebration of the working sailor life of the River Thames and its docks

Please note:
This is a past event and has already taken place

See our current events


Shanty songs reflect our maritime history and heritage and tell the experiences of people usually left out of the historical record. London has a powerful relationship to global expansion, reaching us all down the generations on the Thames tide.

At historic Greenland Dock this musical performance will bring the boat, sailing school and land-side communities together. We will invite owners from the marina to bring their boats into Greenland dock for an overnight mooring, filling the dock with different craft, as would have happened in the past. One of our largest historic vessels will feature in the centre of the dock, lit by lanterns, with the choir and musicians on board. Smaller tenders such as rowboats, canoes etc. lit by natural lanterns,will be gathered round the central vessel to draw attention to the main stage.

This exciting and inclusive event also commemorates Rotherhithe’s unique connection to maritime history. As shanties are call-and-response, audience participation is not merely encouraged, it's inevitable, as is having a great deal of fun!

Plus, see the collective perform at Erith Pier Festival the same day!

Meeting weekly in Dalston, East London, The London Sea Shanty Collective is a community choir that aspires to make relevant songs that speak of diversity. When they don’t, they often link them with lost histories and forgotten narratives, whether relating to racial or cultural groups, gender, sexuality, ability or other aspects of diversity.

Performing in London and across the UK and Ireland, they have sung in community spaces, theatres, pubs, care homes, the British Museum, the British Library, on piers and ships’ decks, including the Golden Hinde in Southwark, and at maritime festivals around the country and Ireland.