Category: Press Releases

Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission Takes to the Thames

Lord Heseltine and members of the Thames Estuary 2050 Growth Commission took to the Thames recently for their first fact-finding trip.

The group were hosted on the river by the Port of London Authority (PLA) and travelled the Thames from Tower Pier through east London as far downriver as London Gateway Port and Thames Oilport in Essex. On board during the 30-plus mile trip they were briefed on river uses, ranging from port trade and passenger travel to riverside housing developments and habitat creation.

The formation of the Growth Commission was announced in the March 2016 Budget. The Commission is charged with developing a vision and delivery plan for North Kent, South Essex and East London, reporting back for the Autumn Budget Statement in 2017, with a clear and affordable delivery plan for achieving the vision. They will look at how the area can develop, attract and retain skilled workers, making the most of opportunities from planned infrastructure investment, including the Lower Thames Crossing.

Just one week ago the PLA formally launched a Vision for the development of the Thames over the next 20 years.

“There is a renewed focus on the Thames as a catalyst for growth over the coming decades,” said Robin Mortimer, PLA chief executive. “This trip was a great opportunity to share with the commissioners the Vision for the Thames that we shaped with stakeholders over the last 18 months. We hope that the Vision will give the Commission a ready reference for the potential growth in use of the Thames and what needs to be done to unlock it.”

Briefing the commission on board an MBNA Thames Clippers fast ferry were representatives from organisations including: Tate & Lyle, Ford, MBNA Thames Clippers, the Port of Tilbury, London Gateway Port, the RSPB and housing group Peabody.

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Minister issues rallying call for investment in the UK’s maritime sector

INVESTINBLUE delegates told that “industry is absolutely critical to the British economy”

Government minister Anna Soubry has heaped praise on Britain’s marine and maritime sectors and urged international businesses to invest in “the UK’s world-leading infrastructure and expertise”.

The Minister of State for Small Business, Industry and Enterprise delivered her rousing endorsement to hundreds of delegates at INVESTINBLUE, the showcase for the UK maritime industry held as part of the International Festival for Business 2016 in Liverpool.

Her message was that Britain was justifiably proud of its centuries old maritime industry and every effort needed to be made to maintain its status as a global power. “From headline-hitting polar research ships to vast offshore wind farms, the UK’s marine and maritime sector boosts the economy and creates jobs across the country. INVESTINBLUE is a great opportunity to encourage businesses from all over the world to invest in the UK’s world-leading infrastructure and expertise.

“This festival is all about trade, and we know that 95% of the volume of trade passes through Great British ports, and fabulous cities like Liverpool were built because of their access to the sea. This is a sector that is absolutely critical to the British economy and we need to make sure we do all we can to grow it,” she added.

Peter Green, Chief Executive of event organiser National Maritime, said INVESTINBLUE had been more than a year in the planning and from the outset it was clear how critical it was to take a collaborative approach to supporting maritime industries.

“We coined the phrase Connecting Maritime Opportunities and #maritimeconnection to illustrate the importance of bringing together enthusiastic and like-minded professionals from all corners of this diverse industry to take on the challenge of ensuring that the UK remains a global maritime power. I believe we succeeded in successfully combining an inspiring speaker programme alongside a busy international maritime exhibition,” said Peter.

Day one speakers

Guy Platten, CEO of UK Chamber of Shipping, delivered an upbeat opening message to delegates, urging the maritime industry to be ambitious and optimistic. He emphasised the need for the UK to seize the opportunities for growth in a global marketplace by continuing to champion our world-class maritime services, training and businesses.

Anita Bradshaw, COO of Green Sea Guard Ltd, outlined how her firm has developed a unique remote emissions monitoring product for ships. She discussed her work to help cut emissions from shipping to help clean up UK waters and the creation of an exciting new London-based shipyard in the Royal Albert Docks.

Delegates were offered a fascinating insight into the Thames Tideway Tunnel project by Roger Bailey, Asset Management Director, Tideway. London’s ‘super sewer’ is the biggest infrastructure project ever undertaken by the UK water industry and will create thousands of jobs during its estimated eight year construction.

The day concluded with a topical debate between expert academics from Edinburgh Napier, UCL and Cambridge Universities along with consulting engineers ARUP about countries resilience to storm surges and floods. Delegates later enjoyed an evening of professional networking overlooking the River Mersey.

Day two speakers

A local Liverpool focus was provided with a welcome from Cllr Phil Davies, Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Portfolio Lead for Economic Development and Energy and Leader of Wirral Council.

He was followed by Mark Whitworth, CEO of Peel Ports, who spoke about Liverpool’s illustrious history and the exciting future of one of the largest, busiest and most diverse ports in the UK. Delegates were fascinated to learn more about Liverpool2, a new £300 million deep-water container terminal.

David Jones, Project Director of Marine Energy Pembrokeshire, discussed new ways of harnessing tidal power to provide a secure and sustainable source of renewable electricity with efficiency and minimal impact on the environment.

Andy White, CEO and Managing Director, CTruk Group, spoke about reinvigorating the historic boatbuilding industry in his hometown through the establishment of CTruk Boats, producers of robust multipurpose work platforms.

Finally Kevin Forshaw, Associate Director, Innovation and Enterprise, National Oceanography Centre, which is part of the Natural Environment Research Council, provided insight into its remit to provide leadership and national capability in the marine sciences, from coast to deep-ocean.

Event organiser Peter Green said feedback from delegates was hugely positive, and included:

“Thanks for hosting a fantastic event. I really enjoyed the range of talks and the diversity of delegates. I look forward to making the Maritime Connection again in two years.” Rory Shepherdson, United Kingdom Hydrographic Office

“Thank you very much for the event. It was a great success! If only there were even more events like that in the industry.” Anna Cebaseva, Client Relationship Executive, CSC

“Thanks for a great event and all you do to promote our great maritime sector.” Rt Hon Anna Soubry, Minister of State (Minister for Small Business, Industry and Enterprise)

Peter added: “INVESTINBLUE reflected the growing recognition that, as an island nation, the UK maritime sector is vital to the future growth of the UK economy. Here at National Maritime we are passionate about engaging with industry professionals who are looking to advance the cause of the maritime industry and share the challenge of ensuring that we remain a global maritime centre of excellence.”


  • 7 guest speakers, 4 expert panellists, 1 Government minister, 2 networking lunches and 1 official networking reception
  • 11 exhibitors and 5 top industry sponsors
  • More than 350 delegates attended the main INVESTINBLUE hall
  • Around 6,000 visitors each day to the International Festival for Business 2016
  • The UK is home to the largest maritime sector in Europe and generates an estimated £56bn of UK GDP, employing 10% of the UK’s workforce

Notes to editors:

  • National Maritime (NMDG) is a maritime network for industries influenced by the sea and waterways. The group focuses on supply chain development and the sustainable growth of estuarine and coastal communities, to drive sector and economic growth. Key sectors include shipping, port operations and business services, marine engineering, renewable, fisheries, heritage, offshore oil and recreational:
  • Jobs in Maritime is the global maritime jobsite & recruitment service of National Maritime (NMDG) shore-side & sea -going careers. A unique job-site and recruitment service for jobseekers and employers, focused 100% on land and sea jobs created by maritime industries, to help drive forward economic growth and prosperity:

For more information or to request an interview with National Maritime, contact Jean Gowin, Jeanius Consulting, on 01908 272850 or email

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Seafarers Awareness Week events take shape across the UK

With two weeks to go, Seafarers Awareness Week 2016 is shaping up to be the biggest campaign yet, since its inception by the charity Seafarers UK in 2010.

Seafarers Awareness Week (20-26 June) will this year showcase Maritime Jobs for Future Generations, and there has never been a more timely campaign to promote UK maritime careers and employment opportunities, both at sea and ashore. Recent reports* have revealed a growth in UK merchant shipping and a forecast huge global shortfall in the number of seafarers, including deck and engineering officers.

Seafarers Awareness Week provides an opportunity to promote the UK maritime industry’s contribution of £11 billion a year to the economy while supporting over 113,000 jobs.

During Seafarers Awareness Week a host of activities across the UK will see the participation of key organisations including IMarEST, Maritime Educational Foundation, Merchant Navy Training Board, Nautical Institute and UK Chamber of Shipping. The week, sponsored this year by Inmarsat, also encompasses several maritime training establishment events, in Blackpool, Dartmouth, Liverpool, Newcastle and Southampton.

All registered events, including some taking place just before or after the week, are promoted on the Seafarers Awareness Week website at To view the current events list please visit

Complementing the Seafarers Awareness Week events and intensive media relations activity is a campaign encouraging primary school teachers and children to think about the maritime world and how 95% of UK imports come by sea, including half the food we eat.

Seafarers UK, partnered with Fyffes, has created interactive materials starring Freddy Fyffes, the loveable banana character, enabling even the youngest school children to take part. Free promotional materials are available to download here

For further information, please contact:
Jean Gowin, Jeanius Consulting Ltd
Phone 01908 272850, email

Nick Harvey, Campaigns Manager, Seafarers UK
Phone 020 7932 5969, email

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Investinblue to hold ‘stormy’ debate during IFB2016

Day one of Investinblue, (15-16th June) will include an interactive, industry lead, panel debate, highlighting the environmental challenges faced by the maritime industry.

“This House believes that the UK and other countries are meeting the economic resilience requirements to address increasing storms” will be the topical debate closing the first day of the Investinblue conference, taking place during IFB2016.

Peter Green, CEO of National Maritime (NMDG), organisers of Investinblue, said; “The debate will essentially focus on the increasing ratio and force of storms, and whether the UK and other countries may have to re-address the economic resilience factor and necessary infrastructure and innovations that may be required.” The complex pattern of storm damage affecting economic marine activity, inland urban and rural areas and key infrastructure is questioning whether existing resources and capabilities are sufficient. It is likely that if economic activities and growth plans are to be realised, the scale and approach towards such resilience may have to be more transformational.

Download full details of Investinblue to hold ‘stormy’ debate during IFB2016 press release.

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Blue Space to drive maritime trade, productivity & growth

Located near to the QEII Bridge, on the banks of the River Thames, Blue Space @ SusCon will provide office and training space for innovative maritime businesses to undertake their work. The centre will help support maritime industries, facilitate growth opportunities and demonstrate why work force development is an economic benefit to the sector.

This unique 30,000 sq. ft., £6.5 million facility and its large open areas provides good opportunities for organisations to undertake a wealth of different sessions ranging from classroom based activities to hands on skill based training.

Speaking before the official launch, which saw Blue Space officially opened by the Port of London Authority Chief Harbour Master, Commander David Phillips, Peter Green, National Maritime Chief Executive, explained that the new centre will give maritime businesses a fixed place to support the development of their operations and the industry workforce.

Download full details of Blue Space news release.

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Leading figures support Investinblue as National Maritime announce conference line up

National Maritime (NMDG) is pleased to announce a superb industry speaker line up for the Investinblue conference taking place 15-16th June 2016.

The two day conference, taking place during IFB2016, will address key strategic points and draw interest and inbound investment in the very best of the UK’s maritime infrastructure and project developments.

Download full details of INVESTINBLUE speaker line up press release.

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‘Blue Space’ to drive maritime trade, productivity and growth in the heart of the UK’s largest maritime region

National Maritime (NMDG) are proud to announce the opening of Blue Space @ SusCon, an outstanding innovation, business and education centre for sustainable industries.

Working in partnership with SusCon, one of the most sustainable education facilities in the UK and pioneers of new approaches to sustainable construction training and research, Blue Space @ Suscon, will support innovative maritime businesses involved in sustainable design, construction, policy, maintenance, operations, education and training.

Download full details of ‘Blue Space’ to drive maritime trade, productivity and growth in the heart of the UK’s largest maritime region – Press Release.

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