In a spectacular event hosted at the iconic Liverpool Cathedral on Thursday, 2nd November 2023, Mersey Maritime celebrated its 9th Annual Industry Awards. The awards marked a significant highlight in the maritime sector’s calendar, with over 550 distinguished guests from across the United Kingdom and beyond coming together to recognise outstanding achievements and innovations in the maritime industry.
The awards process received an overwhelming response, with more than 100 individual applications submitted on behalf of over 50 diverse businesses and organisations. These submissions represented various sectors within the maritime industry, underscoring the broad spectrum of talent and expertise in the field. The rigorous judging process, which included expert assessment and an industry-wide vote, saw a record-breaking 2,500 votes cast, showcasing the sector’s deep interest in and commitment to the awards.
This year, Sam Quek MBE, Olympic gold medallist and TV presenter, assumed the role of host for the evening. Born and raised in the North West, Sam brought a deep connection to the region, adding a personal touch to the event.
A key highlight of the evening was the keynote address delivered by Katherine Fairclough, CEO of Liverpool City Region Combined Authority. In her address, Katherine, emphasised the pivotal role of the maritime industry in driving growth and investment within the Liverpool City Region. Her insights and vision for the future underscored the critical importance of the sector in the region’s economic development and global standing.
The prestigious Business of the Year Award was presented to Stone Marine Shipcare Ltd, an exemplary company renowned for its dedication and excellence in the maritime sector. Stone Marine Shipcare Ltd was founded in 1946 and has a rich history of providing comprehensive marine services in the Liverpool City Region and beyond.
The highly sought-after Maritime Ambassador Award was awarded to Sir Michael Bibby, a distinguished figure known for his outstanding contribution to the maritime industry over the course of his career. Sir Michael has been a prominent and influential leader in the sector, serving as the former CEO of the Bibby Line Group, a renowned shipping and logistics company; one of the oldest family maritime companies in the region. His visionary leadership and advocacy for the maritime industry have left a lasting mark on it and this award was clear recognition of that fact.
Diamond sponsors for the event were Kays Medical, Liverpool John Moores University, and Peel Ports Group, alongside other category sponsors. The awards celebrated the best-in-class within the maritime sector and highlighted the Liverpool City Region’s commitment to driving growth and investment.
As part of the proceedings, those attending were invited to support Mersey Maritime’s chosen charity for 2023, The Hive, which is based in Wirral. The Hive Youth Zone in Birkenhead is a state-of-the-art purpose-built centre for young people within our area, where 1 in 3 children live in poverty. The Hive exists to help young people feel happy, healthy and to thrive within their community. Always putting young people first, they combine high quality youth work with inspiring activities in an inclusive, safe space. We are delighted to announce that an astonishing £33,000 was raised on the night to support the vitally important work of this exceptional local charity. We pay tribute to all those who were so generous in responding to this call to action – thank you!
Ruth Wood, CEO at Mersey Maritime, commented on the event, stating: “These awards are a testament to the exceptional standards and world-class expertise on display within the Liverpool City Region’s maritime community. The sector contributes over £5 billion to the region’s economy, supporting over 45,000 jobs. Mersey Maritime was established to create an ecosystem that champions one of the most diverse maritime regions globally. We are honoured to have played a role in fostering a thriving and internationally significant maritime cluster, built on collaboration and excellence. Our commitment remains unchanged: to support job creation and champion industry growth. We were delighted once again to recognise so much success in our region over the last year with yet another successful Mersey Maritime Industry Awards.”
Katherine Fairclough, CEO of Liverpool City Region Combined Authority said: “The Maritime Sector has always been a vital part of our city region’s economy and we have led the way ever since the world’s first commercial wet dock opened here in 1715. The excellence on show at these awards clearly demonstrates that leading role continuing today.
“Through exciting developments including the Liverpool City Region Freeport and the Mersey Tidal Power project, the Combined Authority, led by Mayor Steve Rotheram and our six Local Council Leaders, is working to ensure that proud history of entrepreneurship and innovation contributes to a bright future for our whole city region.”
Maritime Minister Baroness Vere said: “For over two decades, Mersey Maritime has championed the world-class businesses and organisations across the North West’s thriving maritime sector, and I’d like to congratulate the worthy nominees and winners for their success at this year’s awards event.
“Liverpool has a strong and historic maritime past but it’s also fantastic to see industry’s commitment to the sector’s future, reflecting the shared goal of both industry and government to boost UK wide trade, decarbonise, and improve the air quality in our coastal communities as we build a greener, cleaner maritime industry.”
The full list of Mersey Maritime Industry Awards winners is as follows:
- Business of the Year, sponsored by Maersk: Stone Marine Shipcare Ltd
- Diversity Champion Award, sponsored by Peel Ports Group: Maersk
- Commitment to Maritime in LCR Award: Brian Melia – Cruise Liverpool
- Employer of the Year, sponsored by Kays Medical: National Oceanography Centre
- Future Skills Award, sponsored by Nautilus International: Cammell Laird Shiprepairers & Shipbuilders Ltd
- International Trade Award, sponsored by Brookes Bell: Royal HaskoningDHV
- Maritime Professional Services Award, sponsored by BAE Systems: Hill Dickinson LLP
- Net Zero Award, sponsored by Liverpool John Moores University: Svitzer
- Positive Impact Award, sponsored by Cammell Laird: Battle of the Atlantic Memorial
- Rising Star Award, sponsored by Royal Navy: Leah Rogers – Thetius
- SME of The Year, sponsored by Denholm Logistics: The SeaKing Group
- Technology & Innovation Award, sponsored by MTC: Brookes Bell
To view photo gallery of the evening, click HERE
To view all winners, click HERE