2018 Fishing News Awards Winners

Use the menu below to see each category winner in the Fishing News Awards 2018

Demersal Fisherman of the Year Technical Innovation of the Year
Pelagic Fisherman of the Year Trainee Fisherman of the Year
Shellfish Fisherman of the Year Fishing Port of the Year
Fish Processor of the Year New Boat of the Year
Indep. Fresh Fish Retailer of the Year Young Fisherman of the Year
The Sustainabilty Awards Lifetime Achievement Award
Coastal Fish Restaurant of the Year

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Demersal Fisherman of the Year sponsored by Peterhead Port Authority

Joint Winners:

Peter Bruce, Budding Rose PD 418

At 21, Peter took over from his father Jim as skipper of Budding Rose PD 284. In 1990, he launched the new 80-foot seine net trawler Budding Rose PD 418, which he fishes out of Peterhead, most often pair-seining with the Lapwing, skippered by Brian Buchan. Peter’s experience is respected, as are his ongoing efforts to improve gear selectivity. His passion for the industry is notable, as is his use of social media to promote the industry and its issues. He is a pragmatic advocate for the industry and sustainability.


Alan Dwan, Ajax PZ 36

Alan has put a huge effort into getting his Cornish Hake certified, hoping to increase the value of his catch, and gain recognition that the fishery is well-managed and avoids negative impacts on sustainability. The Ajax crew’s handling of their catch results in outstanding quality. Alan is prolific on social media – #AjaxHake – giving his followers an insight into fishermen’s lives, and he understands his end-user; the general public. He has had a huge impact on increased demand for his fish, and he markets his product extremely well.

Other Finalists:
James Corbett, Sparkling Star UL 290
Ivan Garriock, Valhalla LK687
Ryan McRobbie, Karen Ann II FR 559


Pelagic Fisherman of the Year

Winner: Davie Hutchison, Charisma LK 362

Davie was born and raised on the island of Whalsay – home to most of Shetland’s pelagic fleet – with a strong family tradition of fishing. Together with his partners in the Charisma Fishing Company, he took delivery of the 107ft purser/trawler Charisma in 1979. This vessel was replaced in 1995 with a new midwater trawler, followed by a third new boat in 2003. A fourth Charisma is scheduled for delivery next year, when this midwater vessel will feature electric deck machinery, further advancing the technological development of the UK fleet. This continual reinvestment in pelagic fishing, together with his longstanding representation of the pelagic sector, is testament to how Davie’s personal commitment to the fishing industry is as strong today as it has ever been.

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Shellfish Fisherman of the Year

Joint Winners:

Winner (static gear): Alan Steer, Superb Us DH 99

Alan is a legend in the shellfishing world in Devon. He is chairman of Fishing into the Future, a member of the South Devon and Channel Shellfishermen’s Association, has dedicated immense amounts of time and personal effort to forward sustainable shellfishing in the South West. He is interested in training fishermen, takes shellfishing into schools and operates as an ambassador for the industry whenever he can. He’s dedicated years to the industry and is a worthy candidate for this award


Winner (mobile gear): James Spencer, Sylvia Bowers DS 8

James has dedicated his whole life to the sea and loves it as much now as when he started. He has a real passion for what he does, which rubs off on his crew. He runs his boat like clockwork, is a good all-round hand, and a ‘fine-thinking man’. Another comment was: ‘I’ve fished with a few skippers over the years and James really was hands down the best skipper’. He has a passion for the job like no other, and a wealth of experience

Other Finalists:

Damian Chapman, Amadeus TH 7
Ian Fletcher, Rois Mhairi OB 45
Dominic Welsh, J-Sea E 333

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Fish Processor of the Year

Winner: Flatfish, Grimsby

Winners in 2016, Flatfish is a family company, founded in 1979, operating from a stall on the Grimsby Pontoon, that now occupies a purpose-built factory, with automated grading and filleting equipment capable of producing 17,000 flatfish fillets per hour at full capacity. Heavy investment in both people and the latest technology has built a processing facility that enables the company to showcase to the major retailers the highest quality fish sourced from the UK fishing fleet. Flatfish is totally committed to upholding the integrity of the supply chain, whether by way of its input as a Processing Panel member at Seafish, its involvement in the Responsible Fishing Scheme, or advocacy of MSC certification across the industry.

Other Finalists

Lunar, Peterhead
More Seafoods, Brixham

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Independent Fresh Fish Retailer of the Year

Winner: Fresh from the Boat, Emsworth
Fresh from the Boat provides local people and local businesses with locally-caught fish and shellfish. Run by Peter and Chantelle Williams, each day’s catch comes from local boats, including Peter’s own boat, the Sarah C SE 121. The catch is displayed on the company website, and delivered to customers by Chantelle. A weekly whole fish fish-box service is particularly popular with customers, as is the work put in by Chantelle to educate people on preparation and how to best cook fish.

Other Finalists

Fish on the Quay, Exmouth
Hughes’ Fish Company, West Mersea
Latimer’s Seafood Deli, Whitburn
World of Fish, Lowestoft 

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The Sustainability Award sponsored by The Fishmongers’ Company

Winner: Scottish Fisheries Sustainable Accreditation Group (SFSAG) – North Sea Cod MSC accreditation

Having gained MSC certification for NS haddock (2010/2016) and saithe (2013), after being formed in 2008 to deliver these achievements, in 2016 the group took on the challenge of certifying North Sea cod against the new version 2.0 of the MSC certification standard. This was a bold move, both in terms of taking cod into the certification programme but also to use the new version of the MSC standard against which to measure its sustainability. The result was positive, with North Sea Cod being MSC-certified on 18 July, 2017. A successful outcome for such an iconic species, which required extensive collaboration within the SFSAG, advocates the responsible behaviours of everyone involved and provides exceptional market opportunities on a national scale.

Other finalists:
Alan Dwan, Skipper Ajax PZ 36 – MSC Accreditation SW Hake Fishery
Fishing into the Future – ‘Fisheries Resource Education Programme’
Project UK Fisheries Improvements – Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs)
West Herring Survey

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Coastal Fish Restaurant of the Year, sponsored by Coast Magazine

Winner: Magpie Café, Whitby
Hugely popular with locals and visitors alike, this café specialises in local fish and seafood. The building, which overlooks Whitby harbour, was devastated by fire last year, resulting in its closure during the busy summer months. But the owners have been resilient, and the café has reopened with new vigour, and to much acclaim.

Other finalists:

Cafe Môr, South Pembrokeshire
Crab House Café, Wyke Regis
Cromars, St Andrew’s
Latimer’s Seafood Cafe, Whitburn
No. 7 Fish Bistro, Torquay
Rockfish, Dartmouth
The Idle Rocks, St Mawes
The Old Boathouse, Amble
The Seahorse, Dartmouth

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Technical Innovation of the Year sponsored by Box Pool Solutions

Winner: Selective net grid – Phillip Reid

This completely new design of flexible inclined panel, developed by young Peterhead skipper Phillip Reid over a considerable period of time of fully-documented experimentation, is now proving to be very effective at separating Nephrops from fish, and releasing all undersized fish. It separates the fish species using a panel of square mesh netting held in the aft part of the net at an incline to the horizontal. The Nephrops fall through and the panel directs the fish upwards.

Other finalist:
Gyro stabiliser/Soph-Ash-Jay-2 – John Affleck

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Trainee Fisherman of the Year sponsored by Sunderland Marine Insurance

Winner: Lee Odie, Mizpah LK 173, NAFC Marine Centre

Lee always wanted to work at sea, but initially trained as a joiner. After several years, his interest in fishing grew, and he started helping boats land fish on the market, where he caught the attention of local fishermen. He enrolled on the funded Seafish ‘Intro to Commercial Fishing Course’ where he gained his basic training.

Lee was taken on as a crewmember of the Mizpah, where he has shown a great enthusiasm for the job. He has undertaken a five-day Bridge Watch-keeping course and is enrolled on the ‘Modern Apprenticeship in Seafishing’ and is making good progress. Lee has taken a bold step to pursue a new career, in which he is thriving.

Other finalists:
Harry Forsyth, Kirkella H 7, Scottish Maritime Academy
Jonathon Garrett, Our Lass III WY 261,Whitby & District Fishing Industry Training School

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Fishing Port of the Year

Winner: Peterhead
A new port record annual catch of £195m was achieved in 2017. At the same time, work on the £51m North Harbour development, which by doubling the depth of water give all classes of whitefish boats 24/7 access to a new landing hub, continued to progress well.

Other finalists:

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New Boat of the Year

Winner: Voyager N 905

The first of a new generation of pelagic vessels, the 86.4m dual-purpose midwater trawler/purse-seiner Voyager features a number of significant firsts for a UK pelagic vessel designed to promote catch quality, fishing efficiency and crew welfare and safety. Pelagic fish can be pumped aboard either at the stern or amidships, or on the starboard side amidships.

Other Finalists:

Asteria BRD 250
Alannah Riley S 40
Boy Andrew WK 170
CFL Hunter FK 1601
Daystar FR 86
Diligent Jo LT 1045
Faithlie FR 220
Grateful FR 249
Henk Senior LH 356
Keila K 121
Kindred Spirit LT 1048
Manx Shearwater DO 118
Onward WD 311
Pathway PD 165
Soph-Ash-Jay-2 LH 60
Sparkling Star UL 290
Steadfast Hope BF 340
Venture III BF 326
Victory Rose WY 34

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Young Fisherman of the Year

Joint Winners:

Ryan Corbett, Sparkling Star UL 290
Ryan started as a deckie learner at 16 on his father’s boat Sparkling Star BCK29. By 18, he had completed his under-16.5m unrestricted skipper’s ticket and GMDSS general operator’s certificate. His first trip as skipper of the Sparkling Star soon followed.
In 2016, Ryan sat his Class 2 Mate’s Ticket, and was back in the wheelhouse in 2017, taking more of the boat, while his father oversaw the build of Sparkling Star UL290. Since the delivery of Sparkling Star UL290 in December 2017, Ryan has resumed his duties as skipper and continues to be very successful.


Haydn McLeod, Forever Faithful PD 289
At 16, Haydn started a 12-week trainee deckhand course, where he excelled and was offered a job with a standby company in Aberdeen. He realised he wanted to be fishing and left for a berth on a pair-trawler. His father invested in his own boat, and Haydn undertook his 16.5m licence, taking the boat on his own for six months. He successfully undertook the Class 2 Deck CoC, when he was approached by Andrew West, skipper/owner of the Forever Faithful and offered a trial position as a relief skipper. Mr West is delighted with Haydn and the leadership qualities he shows. He now takes sole charge of a crew of five.

Special Merit Award:Jack Sanderson, Perseverance II H 11
Jack is 19 and works the hauler on the Bridlington crabber Perseverance ll. At nine, he was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma, an extremely aggressive form of bone cancer. He lost his hair, his happiness, his childhood and half of his weight. The final blow came when he had to lose a leg. He never ever complained. Jack works full-time on a rolling deck. He gets on with his job and is always eager to learn. He uses a prosthetic leg and works hard as a crew member, never letting his situation impact on his ability to work or do anything. He is an outstanding role model to others.

Other finalists:

Josh Buchan, Josh Rose BF 22
Dean Cowie, Reliant CY 799
Ben Irvine, Opportune LK 209

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Lifetime Achievement Award

Winner: Arnold Locker, Whitby

Arnold started fishing in 1970, becoming a leading and highly-respected trawler skipper. He was a founder member of Lockers Trawlers Ltd, and moved ashore full-time to oversee the fleet and expand Lockers Fish and LW Shellfish. Arnold served on the NFFO board of directors for 26 years, twice as chairman and twice as president. A stalwart supporter of the North Sea Cod Fully Documented Fisheries since its formation, Arnold has been influential in all aspects of discard avoidance policy. He was a founder member and chairman of Alliance Fish Whitby Ltd, and the Whitby Fishing School, retiring only last year as chairman, and continuing as president. For over 20 years he served on the board of directors of Eastern England Fish Producers Organisation Ltd, as vice chairman for most of that time. Arnold’s unrivalled enthusiasm for – and knowledge of – the industry have been of vital importance during his regular attendances at high-profile meetings such as: North Sea RAC, EU/Norway, Brussels, Landing Obligation, Post-Brexit Opportunities & Future Policy FDF Scheme.

Special Contribution Award: Kenny McNab, Tarbert
A former Tarbert skipper, Kenny is chairman of Clyde Fishermen’s Association ensuring the best interests of its members are reflected in policy and practice. More recently, he was instrumental in the setting up of the Clyde Fishermen’s Trust. His knowledge is incredible, and he works tirelessly for the coastal communities and fishermen he represents. He gives of his time and advice freely, and always encourages people to get involved with fishing and wouldn’t see any of his fishing friends in need. Sadly, he had to prove just what a tower of strength he is to the fishing communities of the Clyde, when the Nancy Glen was lost. Over the past weeks, he’s given every spare moment to do all he can to look after the families and the communities. His actions have been heroic. A great supporter of the Fishermen’s Mission, Kenny also raises a lot of money for this charity, as well as local centres on the Clyde.

Other finalists:

Denys Pascoe, Newlyn
Graham Perkes, Brixham
John W Buchan, Peterhead

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