Mersey Maritime - A driving force for the maritime industry on merseysideMersey Maritime - A driving force for the maritime industry on merseyside

By Mersey Maritime

Cable-maker Tratos shows how UK is still a hotspot for specialist manufacturing

Although the UK may have lost much of its volume manufacturing over the past few decades we are still world leaders in making high quality, high spec products – with Tratos being an excellent example.

Formerly North West Cables, the Prescot-based business operated from a small factory in Knowsley Business Park. In 2009 it was take over by Tratos, an Italian family firm which has overseen a £17m investment and quadrupled the footprint of the plant.

New forklifts
As the company’s previous name suggests, it manufactures electrical cables – not so much the type that connects your bedside lamp to the wall but more on a large industrial scale.

According to finance director Kevin Martin, some of the reels of cable the firm produces are now so big they have had to invest in a new fleet of forklift trucks capable of lifting them.

Mr Martin joined from the social housing sector in 2014 and quickly realised he face a bit of a learning curve. He said: “When I first came here I asked for a product list and people looked at me a little funny and I quickly realised – there are thousands of different electric cables, many bespoke, we can produce.”

Customer base
Employing 60 people, Tratos deals with an array of customers from many business sectors including rail, road, telecommunications, oil and gas and aviation (cables for airfield lighting).

Tratos is also a major supplier to the maritime sector, supplying wiring for ships and demonstrates how varied the maritime supply chain is.

“We also have a strong relationship with Peel Ports, supply them with products for their sites across the UK,” Mr Martin added.

Tratos has its own testing facilities which include the standard test for voltage, spark test and resistance as well as more in-depth tests for elongation, heat shock, shrink back and vertical flame tests.

Major confidence
Mr Martin says Brexit is obviously something the company will need to look at in terms of logistics but says the Italian owners have demonstrated huge confidence in the site with their investment.

He added: “Tratos committed to a five-year investment plan in early 2014 and three lots of funding have been brought together, totalling £17m.

“It has been a major commitment to the site by the Italian owners, despite the prospect of
Brexit which could be a logistics headache. Around 90% of the raw materials, such as the copper, comes from Italy so that is something we will need to look at.”

By Mersey Maritime

Liverpool city region could grab a slice of a £48bn investment into UK offshore wind

Pictured: Matthew Wright, UK managing director at Ørsted

Liverpool city region could reap the benefit of a massive expansion in the UK offshore wind sector between now an 2030.

In partnership with the Government the UK offshore wind industry has unveiled plans for a £48bn investment into offshore wind, creating an extra 16,000 skilled jobs with the aim of supply one-third of the country’s electricity needs.

This scaled up ambition, coupled with the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy, means the industry will more than double its capacity from 13GW deployed or contracted today, to 30GW by 2030.

Mersey presence
The announcement was welcomed by Danish renewable energy giant Ørsted, which operates a huge wind farm in Liverpool Bay as well as a recently completed onshore operations centre in Wirral Waters and is a member of local industry body, Mersey Maritime.

Its recently completed Burbo Bank extension, 7km off the coast, can generate enough electricity to power 230,000 homes utilising the most powerful commercial turbines in the world. This rises to 310,000 homes when the output of the original Burbo Bank wind farm is added.

Liverpool city region has now established considerable know-how and expertise in offshore wind and its supply chain is well-placed to take advantage of extra investment over the next decade.

Breakthrough moment
Last year the offshore wind sector hailed the approach of a “breakthrough” moment when it was revealed the cost of subsiding the industry had fallen to to 57.50 per megawatt-hour, far exceeding Government expectations and well below the price of £92.50 awarded in 2016 to the Hinkley nuclear power station.

The sector is now offering to make a number of new commitments from the industry to support the objectives of the Government’s Industrial Strategy – prioritising innovation, creating new business opportunities, generating high-quality jobs, helping communities to prosper and upgrading UK infrastructure.

For example it has identified the potential to invest a further £48bn in essential energy infrastructure by 2030, which could reduce overall electricity system costs by 9%.

Sector analysis also shows how the growing global offshore wind market, expected to reach over £30bn per annum by 2030, presents huge export opportunities for the UK. If a deal is agreed, the industry believes it can grow its export value five-fold by 2030.

Economic growth
Matthew Wright, UK managing director at Ørsted, said: “The UK is the global leader in offshore wind and to date the industry has attracted huge amounts of investment in the UK, whilst reducing costs and producing clean renewable energy.

“We are proud to have played our part in this; we have nine operational wind farms in the UK which, combined, provide enough green electricity to power over 2m UK homes each year.

“With the industry’s ambitious 2030 target of 30GW we can expect to see yet more economic growth, more jobs and more opportunities for UK supply chain companies.

“By collaborating with academic institutions and other businesses, we will continue to lead the world in offshore wind and support the Government with its Clean Growth ambitions.”

Ørsted’s operations centre at Kings Wharf, which employs 45 people, brings its total investment into the North West since 2005 to £5.4bn.The company has also committed to a Burbo Bank Extension Community Fund worth approximately £225,000 each year for the lifetime of the project.

By Mersey Maritime

Mersey Maritime members give their backing to major Wirral youth project, The Hive

Members of Mersey Maritime are renowned for their business excellence and also their commitment to do as much to help the communities around them.

It is not surprise to learn, then, that no less than six of our members have given their backing to a Wirral youth facility that will soon celebrate its first birthday with more than 6,000 young people from across the borough signed up as members.

Based in Birkenhead, the Hive is a purpose-built centre designed to provide young people with a safe and positive environment where they can enjoy a wide range of activities, learn new skills, raise their aspirations and realise their full potential and is open seven-days-a-week.

There are 38,900 10-19-year olds living in Wirral and just over 24.6% of young people in the area are living in poverty, significantly higher than the national average so the facility is much-needed.

The Hive costs £1m a year to run and it relies on the backing of local businesses to provide 50% of that total and that list of backers includes six Mersey Maritime members – Cammell Laird, The Bibby Family (Bibby Line Group), Peel Land & Property, Hill Dickinson, Wirral Council and Wirral Chamber of Commerce.

Over the past week, the Hive has secured a new patron – Birkenhead Business Improvement District, a partnership between Wirral Council and the chamber.

Paula Basnett, chief executive of Wirral Chamber, said: “The work which both The Hive and Birkenhead BID carry out is very important for the future of the area.

“Birkenhead BID has undertaken a number of key initiatives since its formation and there are clear indications that it has made a positive impact in making Birkenhead a better place, particularly in helping future generations who will be tomorrow’s entrepreneurs and will have pride in the town.”

As part of the OnSide Youth Zones network, The Hive is designed to ensure its young members have ‘something to do, somewhere to go and someone to talk to’.

The centre offers an extensive array of activities and first-class facilities including a 4G football pitch, four-court sports hall, iconic climbing wall, fully fitted gym, skate park, music room, media room, arts and crafts areas, dance studio, boxing gym and recording studio.

It has already been credited by the local police with having a positive impact on the level of youth offending.

The Hive opened last April and had already surpassed its first year membership target by November. Chief executive Stuart Barnes, said: “This success wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for the continued hard work of The Hive team, the ongoing support of our patrons, the input of our young members and, of course our ever-growing army of volunteers

By Mersey Maritime

Sensor City looks to transform lives in UK-wide 5G technology project

Pictured, Alison Mitchell, executive director at Sensor City

Sensor City in Liverpool has secured a £3.5m Government grant to investigate how 5G technology can boost the health and social care sector.

As part of its new digital infrastructure drive, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has announced six 5G testbeds led by SMEs, universities and local authorities.

They will test 5G across a range of applications, including smart farming with drones, using the ‘Internet of Things’ to improve healthcare in the home, increasing manufacturing productivity and maximising the future benefits of self-driving cars.

Consortiums across the country receive between £2m and £5m government grants of a £25 million competition, as part of a total investment of £41m from private and public sector funding.

Sensor City, a member of Mersey Maritime is a £15m collaboration between the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University (also a member) which aims to establish a world class business and research hub around sensor technology.

It will lead a consortium made up of public sector health suppliers, the NHS, university researchers, local SMEs and a leading UK 5G technology vendor to explore fifth generation mobile communications technologies.

Funded for one year in the first instance, the project will see high value technologies including low-cost open source 5G networks, artificial intelligence, virtual reality and the Internet of Things deployed across deprived communities in the Liverpool city region test bed.

The consortium will use this technology to reduce the digital divide, while measuring the impact on patient monitoring and support, management of loneliness in older adults, aid to independents living in the home and the facilitation of communication between hospitals and the community.

Alison Mitchell, executive director at Sensor City, said: “The Government’s 5G strategy for the UK presents a fantastic opportunity to transform the lives of many, especially through health and social care, so I think I speak for all partners when I say we’re excited to see this work unfold over the next five years.”

By Mersey Maritime

Liverpool Airport agrees commercial partnership with Widnes Vikings

From left, LJLA’s Paul Winfield, Vikings co-captain Joe Mellor and head coach Denis Betts at Liverpool John Lennon Airport

Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LJLA) has secured a new commercial partnership with rugby league side Widnes Vikings.

The deal will see LJLA, a Mersey Maritime member, branding across the Super League club’s stadium, print and digital channels. This includes featuring on the home and away dugouts, as well as prime TV advertising positions within the arena.

The airport will also have an unmissable branding presence in Denis Betts’ press conferences and player video interviews.

The partnership was formally launched with a visit to the airport by Denis Betts and Vikings co-captain, Joe Mellor. The pair met with senior airport management and heard all about the airport’s latest developments.

Richard Munson, commercial and community director at Widnes Vikings, said: “The airport is an illustrious brand that is well recognised for its quality, so we are proud to welcome them to our commercial family.

“We are excited to be have this opportunity to promote the airport to the rugby league community through our matchday, print and digital output this season.”

Paul Winfield, director of aviation development at LJLA, added, “This is a great opportunity to support and work with our nearest rugby league team and to highlight to supporters the great range of holidays and city breaks available direct from Liverpool.

By Mersey Maritime

Business finance specialist Bathgate secures funding for wedding venue

 Tyn Dwr Hall, near Llangollen and in the shadow of the Berwyn Mountains

Wirral business support specialist and Mersey Maritime member Bathgate Business Finance helped secure vital funding towards the expansion of a well-known wedding venue.

Tyn Dwr Hall, near Llangollen and in the shadow of the Berwyn Mountains, wants to add more accommodation space, which will lead to a new wave of recruitment at the Grade II-listed mansion.

The historic site was built for ironmaster John Dickin in 1866 and more recently was used as a youth hostel and educational facility.

But in 2014 it was sold by the University of Central Lancashire for £1m to Matt Jones, managing director of Wrexham-based Knights Construction, which currently employs more than 70 staff on construction and demolition contracts.

Mr Jones has converted the mansion into an exclusive boutique wedding venue following a £750,000 eight month refurbishment scheme, including landscaping.

The hall can now cater for up to 150 guests, offering accommodation for around 65 people in 27 bedrooms, including three wedding suites, guest rooms, as well as a coach house, a game keeper’s cottage in the grounds, and four luxury yurts.

Mr Jones, who grew up in the area, said Tyn Dwr Hall has rapidly established a reputation in its own right as far afield as Dubai and America, with bookings stretching into 2019.

So far the development has created 60 jobs, but Mr Jones said more are in the pipeline with his plans to create an accommodation annexe.

He said: “We are now one of the top exclusive wedding destinations in the UK and we are looking to extend our accommodation opportunities in a new spin-off venture which will create more employment opportunities.”

Mr Jones was introduced by his accountants RSM to West Kirby-based Bathgate which provided finance options for the construction firm, which was experiencing significant growth, and also helped bridge a funding gap in the purchase of Tyn Dwr Hall.

He said Bathgate offered an appealing alternative to conventional funding streams and confirmed they will work together again to deliver his latest expansion plans for the hall.

Bathgate business development manager Ian Adams said: “It was great to have the opportunity to work with Matt, helping with the finance for both Knights Construction and Tyn Dwr Hall and experiencing the transformation of the hall from the original purchase to the exceptional refurbished venue seen today.”

By Mersey Maritime

‘Biggest and best’ Mersey Maritime Industry Awards recognises excellence of the £4bn sector

Liverpool city region’s £4bn maritime sector last night cemented its global status with the biggest and best Mersey Maritime Industry Awards (MMIAs) 2018 so far.
A sell-out audience of 450 people gathered for the awards ceremony held at Liverpool FC’s Anfield stadium, and hosted by BBC Breakfast presenter Louise Minchin, to see accolades handed out to the very best performers in the sector.

Notable winners on the night included Liverpool John Moores University Vice Chancellor, Professor Nigel Weatherill, who was the recipient of the Maritime Ambassador’s Award and Peel Ports Group which scooped the National Impact Award. Accu-right Engineering won the Business of the Year accolade.

Accepting his award, a shocked Prof Weatherill said: “I am totally and utterly surprised by this award and it has left me somewhat speechless.
“It is an enormous privilege to lead the team at the university and to be connected to other teams across the Liverpool city region. I work with a fantastic group of people.”
Major agreement

The success of the evening demonstrated Mersey Maritime’s status as the leading cluster in Europe, representing a sector that employs 28,000 people across the city region. And, to further underline that point, Mersey Maritime announced that it had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Maritime UK that will see the national body open its new northern office at the Maritime Knowledge Hub in Birkenhead.

Andrew Moffat CBE (Maritime UK) & John Hulmes (Mersey Maritime)

As the sector’s umbrella body, Maritime UK brings together the UK’s shipping, ports, services, engineering and leisure marine industries to promote the sector, influence government and drive growth.

Mersey Maritime joined Maritime UK in 2017 and since then has been spearheading the organisation’s work in developing a network of regional maritime hubs. The agreement will help Mersey Maritime to further support the national sector, which employs around 1m people and is annually worth £40bn.

The cluster model developed in the Liverpool city region is recognised by the European Commission as the “gold standard”.

Top-level attendees
Among the guests at Thursday night’s MMIAs, now in their fourth year, were a number of political and business heavyweights, including Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram, Peel Ports chief executive, Mark Whitworth, Andrew Moffat CBE, Chairman Elect of Maritime UK, as well as a high level delegation from the Port of Rotterdam.

Addressing the guests at the start of the evening, Mersey Maritime chief executive, Chris Shirling-Rooke, outlined the breadth of the organisation’s membership and of the wider sector in the Liverpool city region.

“When we think about maritime do we think about the big data and IT companies, the offshore gas businesses and engineering companies, of which there are around 600 in the Liverpool city region – many of them exporting across the world?” he asked.

“Do we think of the lawyers and the accountants, the shipbuilders, the freight forwarders the colleges, the universities? They are all part of our maritime eco system and they support each other – that is what we do.

“We have been named as an exemplar and we are seen as the best cluster in Europe. What we do here is all about leadership and teamwork.”
The full list of winners of the MMIA 2018 is as follows:

Engineering Company of the Year – Sponsored by RSM UK

Accu-Right Engineering Limited 

Freight & Logistics Award – Sponsored by Seatruck Ferries

Liverpool John Lennon Airport & Wynne Aviation 

Best Newcomer – Sponsored by Stellamar

Sensor City

Global Reach Award – Sponsored by Natwest

Royal HaskoningDHV

Innovation Award – Sponsored by Peel Ports

Marlan Maritime Technologies 

Maritime Professional Services Award – Sponsored by Tilney

Hill Dickinson

Positive Impact Award – Sponsored by Associated British Ports (ABP)

Merseyside Adventure Sailing Trust (MAST)

National Impact Award – Sponsored by Maritime UK

Peel Ports Group

Rising Star – Sponsored by Liverpool John Moores University

Sophie Phillips – Complete Training Solutions

Micro Business of the Year – Sponsored by MTC

Fort Recruitment  

SME of the Year – Sponsored by Royal HaskoningDHV

Offshore Painting Services

Maritime Ambassador’s Award – Sponsored by Beech Group

Professor Nigel Weatherill, Vice Chancellor, Liverpool John Moores University

Business of the Year – Sponsored by Stream Marine Training

Accu-Right Engineering Limited 

Tony McDonough
Consultant at Liverpool Business News –
Mobile: 07931 964948
Twitter: tonymc39

Images by Al Disley Images @Alundisley

By Mersey Maritime

Mersey Maritime Industry Awards 2018 putting Merseyside back on the global stage

Industry and political heavyweights from the Liverpool city region, across the UK and overseas will arrive in the city this week to celebrate Merseyside’s £4bn maritime sector.
Backed by big name industry sponsors including Beech Group, Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU), Peel Ports and Stream Marine Training, the Mersey Maritime Industry Awards (MMIAs) 2018 take place at Liverpool FC on Thursday, March 8.
The awards dinner, now in its fourth year, is a complete sell-out. Organisers are expecting a record 450 guests on the evening, all coming to celebrate the city’s region’s “best-kept secret” – a powerhouse maritime sector that accounts for 13% of the region’s annual GDP and employs 28,000 people.

Upward trajectory
It is a sector on an upward trajectory with Peel Ports investing £400m in its Liverpool2 deep water terminal at the Port of Liverpool and the iconic Cammell Laird shipyard bidding for the Royal Navy £1.25bn frigate programme, to give just two examples.

BBC Breakfast presenter Louise Minchin will host the MMIAs for the fourth year in a row and will introduce the key speaker for the evening – Eoin Mac Aoidh, a policy expert at the European Commission.

Other high profile figures at the dinner will include Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram, Mark Turner from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, MEP Jacqueline Foster and Guy Platten, chief executive of the UK Chamber of Shipping.

They join other heavyweights including Mark Whitworth of Peel Ports; Professor Nigel Weathrill, Vice Chancellor of LJMU; Helen Kelly, Lloyds List; Andrew Moffat, chairman elect of Maritime UK; Richard Ballantyne, Chief Executive of the British Ports Association; Wirral Council leader Phil Davies and Lars Ugland of Ugland Shipping.

And giving the event a truly international flavour is a high-level delegation from the Port of Rotterdam – the largest port in Europe.

Exciting times
Chris Shirling-Rooke, chief executive of Mersey Maritime, said: “Central to the MMIAs is the celebration of excellence in Liverpool city region’s maritime sector but the scope of the awards is now much bigger.

“Our National Impact Award puts the event on a UK-wide stage and the calibre of attendees from both here and abroad gives it a truly global feel.

“Three centuries ago the Port of Liverpool established itself as a gateway to the world. Few other ports could match its strategic significance. Those great days are returning – from the giants such as Peel, investing to bring the world’s biggest ships to the Mersey, to our dynamic SMEs – at the forefront of technology and innovation.

“These are exciting times for the Liverpool city region maritime sector which is now rightly recognised as setting the example to other maritime clusters across Britain.”
Shortlist for the 2018 MMIAs is as follows:

Best Newcomer – Sponsored by Stellamar
Bibby Marine Services
Isle of Man Marine Cluster
Sensor City

Engineering Company of the Year – Sponsored by RSM UK
Accu-Right Engineering Limited
James Troop & Co Ltd

Freight & Logistics Award – Sponsored by Seatruck Ferries
Liverpool John Lennon Airport & Wynne Aviation
Lombard Shipping & Forwarding

Global Reach Award – Sponsored by NatWest
Eldapoint Ltd
Royal HaskoningDHV

Innovation Award – Sponsored by Peel Ports
Accu-Right Engineering Limited
Liverpool John Moores University
Marlan Maritime Technologies

Maritime Professional Services Award – Sponsored by Tilney
GP Shipping
Hill Dickinson
Royal HaskoningDHV

Positive Impact Award – Sponsored by Associated British Ports (ABP)
Liverpool Seafarers Centre
Merseyside Adventure Sailing Trust (MAST)
The Engineering College

National Impact Award – Sponsored by Maritime UK
Merchant Navy Training Board
Peel Ports Group

Rising Star – Sponsored by Liverpool John Moores University
Sophie Phillips – Complete Training Solutions
Jamie Bates – Orsted
Emma Wilson – Peel Ports Group

Micro Business of the Year – Sponsored by MTC
Certa Elevators
Fort Recruitment
Sherrington Associates

SME of the Year – Sponsored by Royal HaskoningDHV
Accu-Right Engineering Limited
Eldapoint Ltd
Offshore Painting Services
Star International

Business of the Year – Sponsored by Stream Marine Training
Accu-Right Engineering Limited
Seatruck Ferries Ltd
Royal HaskoningDHV

Tony McDonough

Consultant at Liverpool Business News –

Mobile: 07931 964948

Twitter: tonymc39

By Mersey Maritime

Possible summer start for £25m maritime training and business hub in Wirral Waters

Work could begin in the summer on a £25m maritime training, research and business incubation hub on the banks of the Mersey.

Industry body Mersey Maritime is leading the Maritime Knowledge Hub project in Wirral Waters with strategic partners Liverpool John Moores University, Wirral Council and Peel Group.

Incubation space

Focused on Liverpool city region’s £4bn maritime sector, the facility will provide up to 60,000 sq ft of new incubation space, teaching, research and development, training, commercial and cultural space. It will also be the home for an Offshore Survival Training Centre.

It could also play a key role in Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram’s plan for a £3.5bn barrage across the Mersey which he claims could provide power for 200,000 homes.

Location for the hub will be a Grade II-listed Victorian hydraulic tower in Wirral’s docklands. The building is a a copy of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence. It suffered bomb damage in World War II and is now derelict and unused.

Funding bid

Mersey Maritime has submitted a bid to the EU’s European Structural and Investment Fund (ESIF) to fund the project and a decision is expected within weeks with work starting in the summer with completion expected by 2020.

And the scheme is currently out to architectural competition, with world class architects putting forward a range of innovative designs.

Chris Shirling-Rooke, chief executive of Mersey Maritime, said: “This will be a real game-changer, not just for the maritime sector but for the whole city region economy.

“Out local maritime sector is an industry powerhouse, with recognised world-class expertise, and is now seen as the UK leader. We account for 13% of Merseyside’s annual GVA and employ more than 28,000 people.

“We can be in the vanguard of Britain’s post-Brexit push for a bigger slice of global trade. The Maritime Knowledge Hub will ensure we are at the forefront of innovation in technology, skills and business growth.”

Training clusters

After visiting the site, Metro Mayor Mr Rotheram, said: “Clusters of vocational training, academic excellence and industry are crucial to developing our key growth sectors.

“This international centre of excellence at Wirral Waters will help drive the development of the city region’s maritime sector and will support our ambition for large-scale tidal projects.”

The Wirral Waters site will also contain the MEA Park (Marine, Energy and Automotive Park) – a 1m sq ft waterside manufacturing, logistics, R&D and assembly campus.

Richard Mawdsley, director of development at Peel Land and Property, added:  “The Maritime Knowledge Hub is great example of what’s possible through true collaboration.  Wirral Waters is more than just new buildings.

“It is about proper regeneration, and that means jobs. By investing in both skills and world class facilities, all focused on high value growth sectors such as maritime we can create good quality training and career opportunities.”

The Maritime Knowledge Hub project will be showcased at the Mersey Maritime Annual Awards at Liverpool FC on Thursday, March 8.

By Mersey Maritime

Latest lucky 190 Club winners are revealed at Face-2-Face

February’s Mersey Maritime Face-2-Face event saw the first winners drawn out from the 190 Club.

The club is a private lottery for Mersey Maritime members launched by Chris Wainwright of Beech Group. It aims to raise £24,000 for the charity Feeding Britain by asking members to pay £190 a year to join and be in with a chance of winning monthly cash prizes.

So far 60 members have signed up and Chris is positive his target of 190 participants is achievable. That would raise £36,100 which, after deducting the prize money, would leave Feeding Britain with £24,100 per year.

Winners of the three prizes this month were:

  • £500 – Siobhan McKelvey of Nynas
  • £300 – Phil Jordan of Beech Group
  • £200 – Alan and Kathleen Steadman

Feeding Britain was established in 2015 to combat the growing issue of people in deprived communities not having enough to eat and having to rely on food banks – and one of its trustees is Birkenhead MP Frank Field.

Anyone who wishes to join the 190 Club please contact Chris: or 07730 922435.

By Mersey Maritime

Member of the Month: Hugh Baird College

Hugh Baird College is proud to be situated within the historic docklands of Bootle, just a stone’s throw from the thriving Port of Liverpool.

Firmly rooted in the development opportunities arising from the port expansion, our Port Academy Liverpool building houses courses, apprenticeships and enrichment opportunities for those aged 14 years and upwards who are aiming for supporting roles connected to the maritime supply chain.

Our links with industry across the Liverpool city region and beyond reinforce the importance we place on employers through good communication, collaboration and critical thinking and we understand that only by working with industry can we help to bridge the skills gap and provide our students with the best possible chance of entering the job market.

Peel partnership
This is no better demonstrated through initiatives such as the exclusive partnership with Peel Ports Group that enables students to apply for and undertake 10-week work experience placements across a number of disciplines at the Port of Liverpool.
Peel Ports also recently chose Hugh Baird College’s Port Academy Liverpool building for the launch of its Business on the Move Initiative, which encourages young people to consider a career in the City Region’s growing logistics sector.

Raising skill levels
The latest collaboration for Hugh Baird College is Maritime SuperSkills. Funded through the European Social Fund (ESF), this exciting project is aimed at providing higher level, degree apprenticeship opportunities in the maritime sector.
It is supported by Mersey Maritime, Liverpool John Moores University, Wirral Metropolitan College, the Engineering College, and the Northern Logistics Academy. The plan is to create a solid pipeline of career progression from Level 3 apprenticeships right up to Level 7, within the growing maritime sector.

Key competencies
A committed group of maritime employers have been brought together to shape and define the apprenticeship standards, and agree the key competencies involved in each of the roles.
The project presents a unique opportunity, which will be attractive to both employer and potential apprentice alike: it also makes a much wider contribution to the retention and development of skills within the Liverpool city region, aligned to regional growth sectors.
The Government has recently called upon employers to double the number of apprentices they employ, so this is an opportunity not to be missed!
For more information about further education courses, apprenticeships or higher education programmes at Hugh Baird College, visit or call 0151 353 4444.  Or, if you are interested in finding out more about the Maritime SuperSkills Project, contact

By Mersey Maritime

Cammell Laird steps up its bid for slice of £16bn Heathrow third runway project

Heathrow Airport executives will visit Mersey shipyard and engineering firm Cammell Laird as it seeks pre-assembly hubs for the construction of the airport’s proposed new £16bn third runway.

LBN reported back in November that the Birkenhead-based business was on a 65-strong shortlist along with the Port of Liverpool. Both were picked from a list of 121 applicants.

Four locations will eventually be selected and the will pre-assemble components of the expanded airport before transporting them in consolidated loads to Heathrow.

Two sites owned by Cammell Laird – Campbeltown Road and the MEA Park Wirral Waters in Beaufort Road – as well as the Port of Liverpool in Seaforth are on the list.

National tour
A high-level team of Heathrow executives, headed by chairman, Lord Deighton, will visit each of the sites in the first half of this year to make detailed assessments.

Although the Government has not yet given the final go-ahead for the runway it remains the preferred option for airport capacity expansion in the South East. Liverpool John Lennon Airport is also backing the plan in the hope of securing a new global hub air link.

Heathrow says bidders will not only need to illustrate engineering prowess, they will also need to demonstrate a skilled and dedicated workforce, capability to collaborate on the nationwide project and good connectivity allowing output to be easily transported to Heathrow.

Strong bid
Cammell Laird energy division’s managing director Jonathan Brown said the company has tabled a strong bid for Heathrow, as it looks to diversify into new sectors supplying large modular build structures and engineering services.

“Being shortlisted helps Cammell Laird ramp up awareness of its demonstrated capabilities for supply of plant to industries outside maritime,” he said.
“Heathrow’s expansion is just the type and size of engineering work we are targeting. With our unique facilities, highly skilled workforce and coastal location we can supply the Heathrow expansion project as well as sectors like nuclear new build, oil and gas, utilities, renewables and rail.

“Our bid is further strengthened by our close relationship with Peel and its ports and logistics infrastructure in Wirral, Liverpool and along Manchester Ship Canal.”
Advanced techniques

Mr Brown said another prime benefit Cammell Laird is offering Heathrow is its partnership with the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (Nuclear AMRC) which has co-located in a manufacturing test centre at Cammell Laird’s Birkenhead site.

He explained: “Nuclear AMRC helps us become more efficient and competitive by introducing advanced techniques and technologies in the manufacturing and assembly process.
“It is a core part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, an alliance of seven leading manufacturing research centres backed by the UK’s innovation agency Innovate UK.”

Tony McDonough
Consultant at Liverpool Business News –
Mobile: 07931 964948
Twitter: tonymc39

Cable-maker Tratos shows how UK is still a hotspot for specialist manufacturing
Liverpool city region could grab a slice of a £48bn investment into UK offshore wind
Mersey Maritime members give their backing to major Wirral youth project, The Hive
Sensor City looks to transform lives in UK-wide 5G technology project
Liverpool Airport agrees commercial partnership with Widnes Vikings
Business finance specialist Bathgate secures funding for wedding venue
‘Biggest and best’ Mersey Maritime Industry Awards recognises excellence of the £4bn sector
Mersey Maritime Industry Awards 2018 putting Merseyside back on the global stage
Latest lucky 190 Club winners are revealed at Face-2-Face
Member of the Month: Hugh Baird College
Cammell Laird steps up its bid for slice of £16bn Heathrow third runway project