Congratulations to all those shortlisted and to the winners in this years Export & Freight Awards.

The glittering event was held at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast and was attended by around 700 guests from all sectors of the transport and logistics industry and compered by BBC NI sports presenter Joel Taggart.

A special mention to our customers Derry Refrigerated Transport, Agro Merchants, Mulgrew Haulage & Riverridge who were deserving winners on the night!

Thanks to the team at Export&Freight for all the hard work and another memorable night!


All Winners:

Excellence in Compliance Award sponsored by WG BairdRiverRidge

Safety Award sponsored by Michelin  – PRM Group

Trailer Fleet of the Year 2018 sponsored by CargoBullSurefreight Ltd

Driver of the year 2018 sponsored by RSA Group – Martin Cooper of Beatties Freight 

Technician of the year 2018 sponsored by BPW UK – Paul Conroy of Road Trucks Omagh

Transport Manager of the Year sponsored by Volvo Trucks and Dennison Commercials – Marie-Clare Reid of TST Transport 

Top Training Award 2018 sponsored by Renault Trucks UK and Diamond DistributionSurefreight

Innovation in Excellence Award 2018 sponsored by Road Trucks Ltd and Scania UKGrey & Adams Ireland 

Top Fleet of the Year 2018 sponsored by Mercedes Truck UKMulgrew Haulage

Excellence in Customer Service sponsored by P&O FerriesDerry Refrigerated Transport

Pick Up of the Year 2018 sponsored by Lough Erne ResortIsuzu UK D-MAX 1.9 YUKON

Top Team of the Year 2018 sponsored by Fuso Official  – Technical Transport Products

Van of the Year 2018 sponsored by Simplicity GroupMercedes Benz Vans Sprinter 316 LWB

Chilled Operator of the Year sponsored by Thermo King EuropeMcCulla Ireland

Own Account Operator of the Year 2018 sponsored by DAF TrucksBalloo Hire

Haulier of the Year sponsored by Circle KEDS Express Distribution Services

National and International Haulier of the Year sponsored by IVECO UK & NI TrucksAgro Merchants

Logistics & Warehousing Specialists of the Year sponsored by Man Truck & Bus UK and RK TrucksBond Delivery

Fleet Truck of the Year 2018 sponsored by SDC Trailers and Close BrothersDAF Trucks UK DAF XF

Transport Personality of the Year sponsored by Stena Line – Donal Rice (RK Trucks)



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(Irish Territory Manager Robert Steele wishing Pamela luck as she heads to Dublin to join the rest of Team Ireland.)

We met with Pamela Dennison today as she prepares to head off to the World Driver Championships in Ghent later this week.

Pamela, of WS Dennison has been selected to represent team Ireland along side drivers from Keelings and Gencat in what is the first Irish contingent to compete in the bi-annual event.

Having worked with the family business since leaving school Pamela has learnt everything about the haulage industry from the ground up.  Pamela gained her category C+E licence, completed her Certificate of Professional Competence and became a Chartered Member, as well as a National Officer for the Chartered Institute of logistics and Transport, so its fair to say she know a lot about the haulage industry.

We spoke to her to get her thought of the competition and on being one of only a small number of female drivers in not only the competition but also the industry in general.

How does is feel to be representing Ireland in the World Driver Championships?

I feel honoured to be to have been given such an opportunity. It really is an experience I wasn’t expecting and I can’t wait to get behind the wheel!

What are you looking forward to most?

Apart from representing Ireland at such a prestigious level, the opportunity to meet drivers from such a diverse range of countries, understand the challenges they face and the concerns they have in comparison to ours will be a real eye opener for me.


Is there anything you think will be particularly challenging?

Without a doubt the biggest challenge will be the left-hand drive vehicles.  Specifically, the reversing is causing me a few headaches, but nothing a few practice session can’t fix.

As it’s the first time any of the team have taken part the fear of the unknown is also playing its part in pre-event nerves.  But we can’t grow without pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones – that’s the main reason I continue to grab new opportunities with both hands.


Being a professional driver, do you think it is important to always be learning and improving?

Absolutely.  No matter how many years you have been driving or how many courses you have completed there always more to learn. With laws and regulations changing and both vehicles and technology evolving its vital to stay ahead of the game. Its easy to get stuck in a rut, but by setting yourself new challenges and pushing boundaries you will continue to build your skill set and ultimately become a better driver.


Does being one of only a small number of female drivers in the competition give you an advantage or disadvantage?

I hope neither.  The competition is about knowledge, skill set, maximising productivity , know the size of your vehicle and driving safely.  Physical strength doesn’t come into it.

Because of this, I’m not out to prove myself as a female driver.  I’m out to prove myself as an HGV driver, to myself. I know I’m as good as anyone else in the competition.




Pamela has agreed to keep a video diary of her time in the competition, sharing her highlights which you can see on our Facebook at the end of each day.


Team Ireland have gained sponsorship from a number of Irish companies including NIBC to fund the trip for the competitors.  If you would like to find out more about the competition  please visit


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The World Professional Driver Championships is taking place in Ghent, Belgium from the 27th of September until the 1st of October. For the first time Ireland will be represented by a team of five who will compete against twenty-two other countries. The competition tests the knowledge as well as the driving skills of the drivers. An Eco driving section is also being contested for in their C+E section by Team Ireland.

Good luck to the driver for Team Ireland Brendan Conlon (Gencat), Matthew Kavanagh (Keelings) and our customer Pamela Dennison (WS Dennsion) as well as team captain Barry Lyons and International Competition Jury member Siobhan O’Mara.

We are proud to be sponsoring the first Irish team heading to the Championships!

Read more here.

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As part of National Lorry Week we are taking a look back at our partnership with Young Enterprise and The Chartered Institute of logistics and Transport as we spoke to schools across County Antrim about the careers available in the haulage industry.


NIBC has partnered with Young Enterprise in the hope of encouraging more women in Northern Ireland to join the haulage profession by addressing perceptions and spreading the word about the work of women in the sector during a number of visits to schools and colleges throughout the country.


According to recent reports, nearly 1.5m people work in transport and logistics in the UK, but less than a quarter of these employees are female and only one per cent are HGV drivers which proves the severe need for diversity within this sector.


Jemma Dougherty, Marketing Executive of NIBC speaking on a visit to Ashfield Girls’ High School; “It is common knowledge that there is an incredible shortage of women in the Transport Industry, however there is also not enough awareness around the contribution of woman within the industry, it very often goes unseen.


“Only eight per cent of workers within the haulage industry are women, there is clearly a large part of the population that is not being targeted. NIBC, together with Young Enterprise, are meeting students to discuss all aspects of the sector, including career opportunities. Through a better understanding of the many roles of women within this industry, it is our hope more will consider the haulage industry as a career.”


NIBC specialises in helping transport companies across the UK, Ireland & Holland to run their fleets more efficiently and profitably through the use of tailored telematic products. Founded in 2004, NIBC is now based across two offices in Antrim and Liverpool and it continues to offer highly innovative solutions to some of Northern Ireland’s leading transport companies.


Jemma continues; “We are delighted to be visiting Ashfield Girls’ High School, this is an ideal opportunity to promote the benefits of working within the haulage industry, such as various apprenticeships and training programmes, which may inspire the student’s future career ideas from a younger age.


“The haulage industry is vital to our economy, almost everything we consume is delivered by road and there is a real opportunity for women to be involved in these vigorous operations, be it in the office coordinating successful transport operations, in the warehouse or driving a truck, the prospects are so varied, there is certainly something for everyone.”


Barbara Edgar, Young Enterprise Training Officer, comments, “Young Enterprise is very grateful to NIBC for bringing new opportunities to the awareness of the next generation. We need to inspire women to choose a career in transport and NIBC has certainly transformed attitudes and helped young people open their eyes to a career they may not have considered previously.”


Pamela Dennison, Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, who recently won ‘Women in Transport’ at the Fleet Awards in Dublin comments; “The logistics industry suffers from poor perceptions of its career opportunities. However, the work of NIBC and Young Enterprise helps, from a young age, to highlight the fact the country’s logistics and supply chains welcome women across a whole range of roles, from HGV drivers to managing directors.


Jemma notes; “We should relish diversity. The industry will only be able to attract the right talent and overcome its perception issues by better promoting the scope of opportunities available to women. So come on young women and ladies join the haulage industry!”

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To mark DAF Trucks’ 90th Anniversary, the Dutch brand is looking for the oldest truck still in transport operation. The search focuses on typical DAF vehicles from past decades that continue to run day-to-day.

Operators and drivers are being invited to share their truck on DAF Trucks’ N.V.’s Facebook page.

Initially DAF Trucks focused on the construction of lightweight semi-trailers and commenced truck production in 1949. Ever since, DAF vehicles have earned a reputation for class leading fuel efficiency and driver comfort, as well as outstanding reliability and durability.

Regularly, DAF receives images from operators and drivers around the world, proudly showing trucks that left the production line many decades ago, and are still in daily use. This has triggered DAF Trucks’ interest – what and where is the oldest DAF truck still at work?

DAF Trucks has launched a Facebook campaign to find the answer to this question, with Munster livestock carrier John Tarrent having already shared his classic DAF 2100 from 1984, still working hard today: “She has 34 years of work done, never let us down and she always comes back to base, whether it’s night or day.”

DAF Trucks Ireland, which celebrates a milestone of its own in reaching 45 years in business, is looking for images and stories from its trucks from the early nineties, the eighties, the seventies or even earlier that are still in operation.

Photos or video can be posted on the DAF Truck Facebook page: At the end of November the oldest in-service DAF truck will be announced.

Photo caption
John Tarrent in front of his DAF 2100 which he purchased back in 1984 and which is still in operation. 


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