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The Business Magazine May 2024
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Solent's maritime sector buoyant after national awards

Left to right: Stuart Baker (managing director), Lorna Wagner (programme manager), and Anne-Marie Mountifield (chair) of Maritime UK Solent - picture contributed
Left to right: Stuart Baker (managing director), Lorna Wagner (programme manager), and Anne-Marie Mountifield (chair) of Maritime UK Solent - picture contributed
11 June 2024
Left to right: Stuart Baker (managing director), Lorna Wagner (programme manager), and Anne-Marie Mountifield (chair) of Maritime UK Solent - picture contributed

The Solent's maritime sector is cheering after picking up a host of awards at the Maritime UK national awards at a ceremnony at Titanic Belfast.

Maritime UK brings together the shipping, ports, services, engineering and leisure marine industries across the country while Maritime UK Solent represents the regional cluster.

READ MORE: Solent wins £8.3m national funding for clean maritime innovation

The sector adds £46.1bn to the UK economy and is responsible for facilitating 95% of UK global trade, worth over £500bn per year. It makes a greater contribution to the UK economy than both rail and air combined.

Southampton-based navigation and shipping firm NASH Maritime won the Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise (SME) of the Year Award, whilst Scarlett Barnett-Smith, who trained at Warsash Maritime School, part of Solent University, was honoured with the Bevis Minter Award.

The award recognises outstanding cadet achievements in overcoming difficulties in pursuit of a maritime career.

Her training was managed by Solent-based training provider Just Be Maritime who also attended the awards as finalists in the Start Up of the Year Award.

Meanwhile, Maritime UK Solent won the Maritime UK Future Skills Award 2024, highlighting the organisation's importance in convening the business and the education sector to promote careers in maritime and ensure the sector has the skills it needs.

Stuart Baker, managing director of Maritime UK Solent, noted: "Winning the Maritime UK Future Skills Award 2024 is an incredible honour for us.

"This achievement reflects the dedication and hard work of our entire team, whose energy and passion have been key to the work that Maritime UK Solent continues to do.

"It also highlights the power of the Maritime UK Regional Cluster model in promoting best practices and knowledge sharing across the UK's coastal communities.

"We are immensely grateful for the support of local HE and FE institutions and maritime businesses whose collaboration is vital for our sector's future."

Maritime UK Solent has an extensive outreach to schools and colleges, in partnership with the Solent Careers Hub, which has reached around 130,000 young people.


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Giles Gwinnett is a writer at The Business Magazine. He has been a journalist for more than 20 years and covered a vast array of topics at a range of media settings - in print and online. After his NCTJ newspaper training, he became a reporter in Hampshire before moving to a news agency in Gloucestershire. In recent years, he has been covering the financial markets along with company news for an investor-focused web portal. His many interests include politics, energy and the environment. He lives in Dorset.

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