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NI Cumbria Branch Annual Dinner 2020

The NI Cumbria branch held its 16th Annual Dinner at Energus in Workington on Thursday 13th February 2020. Over 240 guests attended the event, representing more than 40 different companies within the industry. Guests enjoyed entertainment in the form of a magician and caricaturist and after-dinner music provided by a live band. The annual dinner is the Cumbria branch’s cornerstone event, providing an opportunity for guests from companies across the nuclear industry to network with colleagues, celebrate the achievements of the industry in Cumbria and reflect on future changes and challenges.

The branch was delighted to welcome Adrian Simper OBE, NDA Strategy and Technology Director, as our after-dinner guest speaker. Adrian gave an inspirational view on the changing landscape within the industry and the need to drive diversity of thought within our organisations.

The event was hosted by Cumbria branch chairman Matt Aukett, who welcomed a number of guests to the Top Table including Sarah Beacock (NI CEO), Adrian Simper (NDA Strategy and Technology Director), Eldon Garnett (Morgan Sindall, Head of Lot for PPP), Dave Wilson (Atkins, Fuel Cycle Market Director), Dougal Monk (KBR, Director of Strategic Development), Rebecca Weston (Sellafield Ltd, Chief Operating Officer), Martin Walkingshaw (LLWR, Deputy Managing Director), Nick Hanigan (NNL, Change Director and Vice President) and Adrienne Easterbrook (Energus, General Manager). This year we welcomed guests on two further NI tables, including the Cumbria branch committee and events volunteers, a selection of WiN and YGN volunteers, and Jackie Blacklock from our chosen charity Give Us A Break 2010.

A charity raffle and collection were held on the night to raise funds for a local charity Give Us A Break 2010. The charity was founded to improve the quality of life for disabled children in the local area by providing a much-needed short break centre in the community. During the evening, Jackie gave a moving speech explaining the personal story which led to the creation of the charity and highlighting the toll that caring for a disabled child can have on family members. A total of £3178 was raised on the night – a fantastic amount which will help the charity with their objective of purchasing land to build a respite centre.

This year the event was held in collaboration with the NIA, and we were delighted to welcome a number of NIA guests to the evening event which followed the NIA Decommissioning and Existing Generation Group and BECBC Nuclear Sector Group joint meeting during the day.

The Annual Dinner is central to the branch’s ability to deliver all our charitable and educational activities throughout the year, including public education events and STEM outreach activities. The event would not have been possible without the support from our sponsors: Platinum sponsor Morgan Sindall Infrastructure; Gold sponsors Atkins and KBR; Silver sponsors Arup, Doosan and Wood; and SME sponsors Abbott Risk Consulting, NIASS and Westlakes Engineering.

Cumbria Annual Dinner 2020

Photos by Lexi Chambers (Energus)