FISHERMEN’S boats were blessed in a traditional ceremony.

The annual Blessing of the Boats was held at Beach Green, Lancing, at 2.30pm on Sunday when the boats were sprinkled with blessed Holy Water.

The ceremony goes back to Biblical days when many of the first followers of Jesus were fishermen by trade.

Father Barry Carter said: “Blessing the boats is now firmly established as one of Lancing’s traditions.

“It is valued by the sailing community and popular with residents and visitors.”

Originally an event celebrating the historic fishing community in the town, the service now recognises the pleasure boating community as well.

The service was conducted by Father Carter and he was accompanied by hymns from the Sir Robert Woodard Academy Band.