The British Marine Electronics Association (BMEA) Conference 2010, sponsored by Victron Energy, took place on 20th October at the Portsmouth Marriott Hotel. The event sponsored by Victron Energy had over 80 delegates from all over the marine electronic and electrical sectors of the marine industry. This year’s conference included a number of presentations by distinguished speakers and members of the BMEA committee. Among the subjects that were covered were; ‘Preparation for Bluewater Sailing’ by Jeremy Wyatt (World Cruising Club), ‘The History of Electronic Cartography and its Future’ by Giuseppi Carnevali (Navionics), ‘Digital Radar Processing and the New Low Power Radars’ by Odin Sletten (Navico UK Ltd), ‘Twitter ye Not?” presented by Ian Lockyer of Icom UK Ltd, ‘An update on the London Boatshow’ by Andy Williams (National Boat Shows Ltd) and ‘Diesel Powered Generation?’ by David Melville &  Ruut Bosman of Whisper Power. Professor W J Mullarkey (db Research Ltd) and Patrick Beasley of QuinetiQ also made presentations discussing the digital processing of today’s radar signals.

After a full day of conferencing and a lively Annual General Meeting, the day ended with the announcement of four major awards:

  • BMEA Waterside Dealer of the Year Award sponsored by Garmin UK Ltd
  • BMEA Product of the Year Award sponsored by Boating Business
  • BMEA Newly Certificated Technician of the Year Award sponsored by Raymarine UK Ltd
  • BMEA Lifetime Achievement Award

The winner of the “BMEA Product of the Year”, sponsored by Boating Business was Actisense for the second year running for their NGT-1 NMEA 2000 to NMEA 0183 Gateway. Commendations were awarded to Garmin for its GPSMAP 750 and Mastervolt for its 24V Lithium Ion Battery

Based in Poole, Dorset, Actisense has established an enviable world-wide reputation within the specialist field of marine electronics. Phil Whitehurst, Managing Director said, ‘We are all delighted to win BMEA’s Product of the Year award for the second year running. This has been a great year for our business as we continue to buck the trend and build a strong British business during a period of economic downturn. This achievement is a reflection of the continued success of the Actisense brand and our dedicated team of employees.’

The winner of the “BMEA Dealer of the Year Award”, sponsored by Garmin was Landau UK Ltd. Chris Doran of Landau UK Ltd said, ‘Landau UK Ltd is very honoured to win this award for the second year running.  Landau actively seeks feedback from our customers and winning this award means, as a team we are getting it right.  This said, we still feel there are improvements to make and new ways to continue to strive to meet or exceed our goals coupled with customer expectations.’

He added,’ Landau as a whole must take this opportunity to thank all of its customers for their continued support.  Landau hopes to continue to be of service to existing customers and would like to invite new customers to experience Landau’s service for themselves.

Derek Gilbert of Raymarine presented the “BMEA Newly Certificated Technician of the Year” award at the BMEA’s annual conference. The award was made to Andrew Fogg of Piper Boats Ltd.

Based in Biddulph, North Staffordshire, Piper Boats Ltd has over 40 years of experience in narrow boat building. Andrew himself has spent 5 years in the marine industry having previously spent 14 years as an auto electrician.  Andrew recently completed the BMET (British Marine Electrical Technician) training and received his certification this year, making him eligible to enter the award.

Andrew Fogg said,’ I was very surprised and honoured to win this award.  It is nice to be recognised with an award from the industry, especially as we are representing the inland waterway market.

He added,’ I think the BMEA training schemes are excellent and are a good way to get electrical and electronic engineers into the industry.’

Tony Johns, BMEA Secretary won the new “BMEA Lifetime Achievement Award” for his contribution for almost half a century to the leisure marine electrics/electronics industry.  Tony said on being given this award,’ I am absolutely gob smacked.  I was totally surprised…didn’t have a clue that this was coming.  I am extremely honoured and touched to have received this award.’

Paul Holland, out going Chairman of the British Marine Electronic Association said, ‘This is my last conference as Chairman of the BMEA as I now hand over to my successor, Derek Gilbert of Raymarine.  It was great to see such a well attended conference with some fantastic speakers and lively debate from our membership. I would like to thank the committee, our members and everyone who have helped me as Chairman over the last couple of years.’

BMEEA Conference 2010 Photos