Demersal Fisherman of the Year

Sponsored by Peterhead Port Authority logo

To be awarded to a UK- or Ireland-based fisherman who has made a clear commitment to the demersal fishing industry in 2017. Skills, determination, leadership ability and adaptability to changes in today’s industry are all important qualities.


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.

James Corbett, Sparkling Star UL 290

From leaving school and starting as a deckhand to then gaining the opportunity to prove his capability as skipper, James has worked tirelessly, and is completely focused on the fishing – always looking to the future and with the ultimate ambition of building a new boat. 2017 saw this become a reality with the build and launch of Sparkling Star UL290. This was also an achievement for the local area, as Sparkling Star is the first new build for a local skipper since 1985.

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.

Ivan Garriock, Valhalla LK687

Ivan Garriock first went to sea at 15. He trained on the Sunbeam LK 335, skippered by his uncle John Garriock, before fishing with various Shetland boats. In 2009, Ivan bought into the Valhalla LK 687, and took over as skipper three years ago. He is proactive and forward-thinking, hosting scientists on board, and trying various nets to improve fishing. Ivan is also scrupulous about safety measures on board. Ivan has now been shortlisted for two years in a row.

Ryan McRobbie, Karen Ann II FR 559

This twenty-six year old from Fraserburgh has been fishing on-board his family owned vessel Karen Ann II since he left school. After gaining his Class II ticket in 2015, Ryan was forced to take over the helm of his family’s fishing vessel much earlier than expected due to his father’s ill health. Over the past three years, Ryan has gained experience and has proved himself as being a capable young skipper.


To see other category shortlists, click here

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