Pioneering Forth Ports exec named president of UK Harbour Masters Association

Nicholson has worked for Forth Ports for nearly 12 years. Picture: Peter Devlin.Nicholson has worked for Forth Ports for nearly 12 years. Picture: Peter Devlin.
Nicholson has worked for Forth Ports for nearly 12 years. Picture: Peter Devlin.
A Forth Ports executive who is the youngest certified harbour master in the UK has been appointed president of the UK Harbour Masters Association (UKHMA).

Ashley Nicholson is the youngest certificated harbour master in the UK to hold the role with the UKHMA and the first woman to do so. She will be president for two years and replaces Julian Seaman.

The UKHMA says it is the world’s oldet and largest harbour master association, comprising about 480 harbour masters and port professionals from ports across the UK, both publicly and privately owned. Its main aim is to encourage the safe and efficient conduct of marine operations in ports, and engage with, advise and consult the UKgovernment and associated maritime agencies.

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She said: “I am honoured to hold the title of president of the UKHMA and I will strive to continue the excellent work of my predecessors in representing the harbour masters of the UK and encourage and grow the association whilst continuing to provide a valuable return to the harbour mastering community.”

Nicholson has worked for Forth Ports for nearly 12 years, and since 2017 she has been the senior harbour master based in Grangemouth.

Her achievements include recently winning the Scottish Engineering/Incorporation of Hammermen of Glasgow Award for her role in managing the marine operations during the construction of the new Queensferry Crossing, and she recently scooped the Women in Industry prize at the Centre for Engineering Education and Development Industry Awards 2020 for her work to help ensure a more gender-diverse workforce in the maritime sector.

Alan McPherson, chief harbour master at Forth Ports, said: ““This is great news for Ashley and on behalf of all her colleagues at Forth Ports, we congratulate her on her presidency. As a business, we know how important it is to support the development of key members of our marine team and Ashley’s appointment to president reflects that professional and career development achievement.”

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