The winners of this year’s Whitby and District Fishing School awards were honoured in a ceremony in the town.
Members of the fishing commuinity packed into Whitby Mission and Seafarers’ Centre on Haggersgate last Friday for the awards, which followed the fishing school’s latest AGM.
The Whitby Gazette-sponsored Arries-Ide Award, in memory of two fishermen tragically killed in the harbour in December 2014, was Daniel Shiel, of Seahouses.
Editorial Director Ed Asquith presented Daniel with his shield.
Daniel began his training with the fishing school, completing the initial 10 weeks’ training before returning home to work on his grandad’s boats Ajax and Tilly.
In the citation, read by business development manager Andrew Hodgson, Daniel - who has succesfully completed his under 16.5m skippers ticket - earned glowing praise for his hard work and undertaking his sea studies with diligence.
“This young man was exactly the sort of apprentice the school looks for,” said Mr Hodgson, “proving to be reliable and applying himself to everything asked of him.
“We have no doubt this young man will make a fruitful career in the fishing industry.”
Other winners at the ceremony were
George Traves Award for Excellence: Jordan Harrison
Apprentice of the Year Award (Sea Fishing): James Dean
Apprentice of the Year Award (Workboats): Chris Baxter
From an early age, Jordan Harrison was extremely passionate about working on a fishing boat, having learned the ropes from a family friend.
He has now achieved four-fifths of the under 16.5m skippers ticket, and it is expected that he will complete the last seafish module soon and become a skipper in his own right.
James Dean served for seven years with the British Army. He stood out during his seagoing phase when trainers realised that he had “an invisible presence,” needing extra support and guidance but turning into a confident and self-sufficient young man.
“If we could only have apprentices of his calibre more often, the staff’s work here at the fishing school would be made much easier,” said the citation.
Chris Baxter attained a score of 92% during his classroom phase and submitted the best training record book seen at the fishing school. Offshore company Dalby said even after a few weeks with his workboat company, he was up to the level of some of the deck hands who had been doing the job for 10 years.
A luncheon at Abbey Wharf in Whitby followed the awards presentation.