Picture postcard of the Sailors’ Home

The first Sailors’ Home in Singapore was established in 1851 at High Street with the aim of providing board and lodging for European seamen calling at the port. Such boarding houses were found in major seaports around the world and were originally intended to serve the crew of the British Mercantile Marine. Due to the need for more rooms, the Home moved several times, notably to a two-storey building at the corner of North Bridge Road and Stamford Road in 1892. It finally shifted into a new building at Anson Road in 1925. Named Connell House, the construction of the new lodge was partially funded by a donation from the estate of the late Matthew Connell, who was formerly an engineer in the British Merchant Navy. Besides boarding rooms, the new building had various modern facilities such as a swimming pool, bar, billiard room and library. The lodge had to relocate in 1971 when Connell House was acquired by the government for use as offices and later as a temporary campus for Singapore Polytechnic. Rest and recreational facilities for sailors are now provided by The Mission to Seafarers' Care Centre located in Jurong Port.