Northern Irish fishing industry up for awards

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The UK’s only fishing industry awards programme has revealed its eagerly anticipated shortlist, with Northern Irish fishermen and businesses in the running for national acclaim in the annual Fishing News Awards.

Fishermen, fishing ports, fish restaurants, retailers and processors are set to be honoured at the event, to be held in Aberdeen on 25 May.

Businesses and fishermen from Northern Ireland secured three places on the category shortlists, putting them in the running for ‘Coastal Fish Restaurant of the Year’, ‘New Boat of the Year’ and the award for Lifetime Achievement.

Popular family-run restaurant Upstairs @ Joe’s in Cushendall village, Co. Antrim, has made the shortlist having received nominations for its excellent, welcoming service and cookery courses that run alongside its much-loved menu celebrating Northern Irish seafood.

Kilkeel-based vessel Golden Shore N153 is in contention for 2017’s ‘New Boat of the Year’. Purpose built for king scallop dredging and queenie trawling, Golden Shore has the distinction of being the first dedicated scallop boat to be built for Northern Ireland.

Thanks to his 40-year involvement in fisheries, Dick James is in line for recognition in the Lifetime Achievement award. Dick has spent 20 years as chief executive of Northern Ireland Fish Producers Organisation Ltd (NIFPO) and represents his members’ interests in many committees and groups at the EU.