Merseyside’s maritime sector made great strides in 2018 – with 2019 set to be even better

Mersey Maritime chief executive Chris Shirling-Rooke hails a year of achievement for the sector in the Liverpool city region and looks forward to more success in the New Year

Mersey Maritime has had a busy and successful 2018
Mersey Maritime has had a busy and successful 2018


2018 was a great year for the maritime industry across the region, with new services secured at the Port of Liverpool, the delivery of the RSS Sir David Attenborough polar expedition vessel from Cammell Laird, approved plans for a new £5bn Cruise Terminal to accommodate the significant growth in calls over the last few years and finally the city hosting the Northern launch of the Women in Maritime Charter alongside Maritime UK.

Mersey Maritime 2018

It has been a busy but rewarding year for Mersey Maritime, delivering a vast number of diverse events, workshops and seminars covering a multitude of themes and topics including Brexit, Blockchain, Cyber Security, Social Media Training, HR Support, Ballast Water as well as welcoming other key industry speakers.

Highlights of the year include:

  • Supporting a trade mission to New York with the Secretary of State for Department for International Trade, Dr Liam Fox
  • Hosting the Northern Launch of the Women in Maritime Charter at the Liverpool Town Hall, opened by Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson and with key female speakers from across the industry including Julia Bradley (Peel Ports), Helen Kelly (Lloyds List), Kathryn Nielson (Merchant Navy Training Board) and Sue Terpilowski (Women in Maritime Chair)
  • Our Mersey Maritime Industry Awards 2018 which was our biggest yet, with 450 guests in attendance and key winners of the night including Accu-right Engineering, Royal HaskoningDHV, Peel Ports Group and Offshore Painting Services
  • Supporting both the Labour and Conservative conferences, with fringe event for Shadow Transport Ministers in Liverpool and speaking at a panel event on Coastal Powerhouses in Birmingham
  • We launched our Evening Face-to-Face events, bringing our signature event to different members locations across the region with key industry speakers (including Maritime UK, RSM UK and Cruise Liverpool)
  • We hosted four executive events (for our sponsors) including a lunch with cyber-security experts Cyxtera, dinner with the Maritime UK board, dinner with the Vice Chancellor of Liverpool John Moores University and finally a dinner with the First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir Philip Jones KCB ADC where Mersey Maritime also pledged their support to the Corporate Covenant
  • To understand our members needs and requirements in more detail, we issued a member’s feedback survey and launched our Members Engagement Group who have already met twice this year

National Impact

We have also worked hard to continue our traction at a national level, providing our members with the opportunity to feed into the Maritime Sector Deal, Maritime 2050 and the Women in Maritime initiative. My role as Chair of the Regional Cluster Council will also provide our members with great opportunities across the UK when we roll out the scheme (based on the Mersey Maritime model) in next year.

Mersey Maritime chief executive Chris Shirling-Rooke at the Maritime Knowledge Hub


Looking to 2019

It looks like 2019 is going to be another eventful year, with political uncertainty facing us all, Mersey Maritime will be on hand to support our members and will continue to represent and champion the needs and demands of the industry across the Liverpool City Region.

We have some great events planned for next year including:

  • The UK-NL Maritime Nations Forum, in association with Maritime UK and the Netherlands Business Support Office which will take place in Liverpool (17th January)
  • Our fifth Mersey Maritime Industry Awards in March which is now a key event on the national maritime calendar (14th March)
  • We will be relaunching our Export Forum in conjunction with Western Union Business Solutions.
  • Supporting London Shipping Week in September with several different events scheduled
  • Offering monthly open surgery sessions for all members to drop in to discuss any concerns and or opportunities with the Mersey Maritime team

In addition to the above, we will continue to offer all our usual activity and would encourage you to inform us of any key themes, topics and challenges that you would like us to address.

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