Mersey Maritime Industry Awards celebrate region’s powerhouse sector

In Mersey Maritime’s 20th anniversary year, the North West and national maritime industry came together on Thursday 10th November 2022 to celebrate the sector at the 8th Annual Mersey Maritime Industry Awards.

The event, which was held at Liverpool Cathedral, was the biggest and most high-profile yet, with some 600 guests present drawn from across the UK and beyond. Preparations for the awards saw over 100 individual applications on behalf of more than 50 different businesses and organisations. Applications were received from the whole cross section of the industry and its associated sub-sectors and went forward to the well-established judging process which consisted of an assessment by an expert panel and then an industry wide vote. More than 2,500 votes were cast, marking unprecedented interest from across the sector.

Award categories were refreshed this year to represent an evolution in priorities and focus with new awards presented for: Diversity and Inclusion; Environmental, Social and Governance; Global Performance; Logistics Solution of the Year and Moving on the Mersey. For the eighth year running, the host for the evening was former BBC Breakfast present, Louise Minchin.

A keynote address was given by Minister of State in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Nusrat Ghani MP. A longstanding friend of Mersey Maritime, following her engagement with the organisation as Maritime Minister in the Department for Transport, Ms Ghani gave an upbeat speech which congratulated the organisation on its significant anniversary and paid tribute to the difference it makes in Merseyside and across the UK with collaboration at its core.

The prestigious Business of the Year Award was won by D Morgan plc and the much sought-after Maritime Ambassador Award was presented to Gary Hodgson, former Managing Director – Port Logistics, Peel Ports Group. This award is always given in recognition of “outstanding dedication and achievement” and Mersey Maritime is immensely proud to mark Gary’s long and wide-ranging career in the industry in this way, including as a past Board member of the business and a true friend to so many in the region.

Diamond sponsors for the event were BAE Systems, Chevron, Kays Medical and Liverpool John Moores University. Drinks reception sponsors were Hill Dickinson LLP and the after party sponsor was D Morgan.  Category sponsors included: Beech Group, Brookes Bell, Carmet Tug, Denholm UK Logistics, Fort Recruitment, Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC), OPS Wind, Royal HaskoningDHV, the Royal Navy and Wirral Waters.

Commenting, Chris Shirling-Rooke, Chief Executive of Mersey Maritime, said:

“2022 marks a very special point in the life of Mersey Maritime and what better way for us to celebrate our 20 years championing the industry than by bringing hundreds of our maritime family together at our biggest and most spectacular annual awards event yet. The evening was the culmination of a long process for our finalists and we were honoured to be able to offer this fitting showcase for the industry here in the North West. Maritime makes a decisive contribution to the prosperity of this region, being worth £5 billion to the Liverpool City Region economy and supports around 50,000 jobs. These awards give vital recognition to the world-class standards on display in this region and reinforces our position as a global maritime centre of excellence.

“Mersey Maritime was conceived to create an ecosystem, championing and supporting one of the most diverse maritime regions in the world. We are incredibly proud of our role in facilitating a thriving and internationally significant cluster for the sector in the Liverpool City Region, one built on collaboration and working together to represent the very best that this industry has to offer. Our driving mission remains the same – to support job creation and champion growth.

“It was inspirational to see the very ‘best in class’ on display in the room at the awards and the passionate dedication of the whole industry moving us forward in the future. Our theme was, ‘Our Time is Now’, which offered an opportunity to reflect on the last two decades but also consider what the future might bring. Our members will always be at the heart of that and we will continue to be the most powerful advocate for them all that is possible.”

BEIS Minister for the Marine Sector, Nusrat Ghani MP, said:

“Mersey Maritime has been making a difference to the marine industry in Merseyside, and across the UK, for 20 years. Its collaboration across the industry sets an example for how we want the sector to keep supporting jobs and growth in every corner of Britain. These awards are testament to this and the unrivalled businesses working across our world leading maritime industries. As the work at COP27, which got underway last week, demonstrates, the sector also has a huge role to play in decarbonisation through the rollout of new technologies.”

Maritime Minister, Baroness Vere said:

“For 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.

“It’s also fantastic to see this year’s theme look ahead 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:

  • Best Newcomer Award, sponsored by Brookes Bell: LCR Freeport
  • Business of the Year, sponsored by OPS Wind: D Morgan plc
  • Diversity and Inclusion Award, sponsored by Chevron: Liverpool Seafarers Centre
  • Employer of the Year, sponsored by Kays Medical: Maersk
  • Environmental, Social & Governance Award, sponsored by Wirral Waters: Bibby Marine
  • Global Performance Award, sponsored by BAE Systems: Polaris Media Management
  • Logistics Solution of the Year, sponsored by Carmet Tug: CMA CGM
  • Maritime 2050 Award, sponsored by Liverpool John Moores University: Expleo Group
  • Maritime Ambassador Award, sponsored by Beech Group: Gary Hodgson
  • Moving on the Mersey Award, sponsored by Royal HaskoningDHV: Cruise Liverpool
  • Outstanding SME Performance Award, sponsored by Denholm UK Logistics: Walker Engineering
  • Regional Deal of the Year, sponsored by Fort Recruitment: Nautilus International
  • Rising Star Award, sponsored by Royal Navy: Charlotte McCarthy from Stone Marine Shipcare Ltd
  • Technology & Innovation Award, sponsored by MTC: RealSphere Eco World


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