Today sees the unveiling of this year’s shortlist for the Utility Week Stars Awards and yet again the finalists are a shining example of the breadth of talent and commitment across the utilities sector.

The awards recognise the heroes of the utility sector who have gone above and beyond to keep the lights on and the water and gas flowing across the nation and in all weathers.

As the industry faces increasing challenges, it is the people on the front line in terms of delivering service and innovative solutions who continue to make the difference.

Nominated by executives and managers, the teams and individuals have been highlighted for their outstanding contributions – whether it be in the delivery of critical services or outstanding schemes for collaboration in the interests of improving sector image and efficiency.

The awards were open to companies of all sizes from all parts of the utilities industry, with the initiative, project or campaign in most cases completed during 2016/17.

Judges had an enjoyable but very tough time narrowing down the many entries in each category, and choosing the ultimate winners – all of whom will be revealed at a special awards ceremony at the Hilton Manchester Deansgate Hotel on 29 June.

One judge described the day in three, simple words: “Thoughtful, lively, and uplifting.”

“Just brilliant”, was how other judges reacted to this year’s Stars Awards entries, agreeing they reflected the huge range of highly committed and extremely talented people working individually and as teams across our utilities.

“Nominations revealed the loyalty, professionalism and innovation that can sometimes go unnoticed but is what lies at the heart of a sector that makes a daily difference to peoples’ lives,” they said.

“Numerous standout entries made it very hard to choose the ultimate winners, as so many great stories and achievements shone through.”

Find out below who made it on to the shortlist.

Utility Week Stars Awards shortlist 2018 


  • Big Bang Award for Innovation: Customer-facing

River Itchen Challenge, Southern Water

Customer Care Team, Green Network Energy Ltd

Electric Avenue Team, UK Power Networks

SSEN Stakeholder Engagement Team, SSEN

Local Heroes, British Gas (Centrica)

Octopus Energy’s Agile Hit Squad, Octopus Energy

  • Big Bang Award for Innovation: Infrastructure

The H21 NIC Project, Northern Gas Networks

Complete Utilities Innovation Team, Complete Utilities

Mayflower Street Pile Cutting and CIPP Patch Repair, South West Water Delivery Alliance H5O

Scottish Water & Caledonia Water Alliance (Morrison Utility Services & AECOM), Morrison Utility Services

Scottish Water, Caledonia Water Alliance (Morrison Utility Services & AECOM) & Pure Technologies, Morrison Utility Services

UK’s first full-scale Nereda® plant (now fully operational for Thames Water), Royal HaskoningDHV

  • Constellation Award for Collaboration with Customers

Affinity Water & Morrison Utility Services, Morrison Utility Services

River Itchen Challenge, Southern Water

Portsmouth Water Infrastructure Team, Portsmouth Water & Cappagh

Lymm Safety Centre, SP Energy Networks

SmartGrid Team, UK Power Networks

Welsh Rugby Union, Rygbi Gogledd Cymru and SP Energy Networks

  • Constellation Award for Utilities Collaboration

Alliance, UK Power Networks

NWG Framework Partnerships, Northumbrian Water Group

Developer Services Digital Transformation, Anglian Water

Portsmouth Water Infrastructure Team, Portsmouth Water

Utiligroup uSmart programme team, Utiligroup

  • Culture Change Champion Award

Gareth Evans and the PWS Retail Service Centre Team, Pennon Water Services

Keeping it Simple Cultural Transformation Programme, Npower

Mark Mills, Investment Manager, Portsmouth Water

Safety Health and Environment Team, UK Power Networks

UK Power Networks’ Electric Avenue, UK Power Networks

Wales & West Utilities’ Innovation Team, Wales & West Utilities

  • Data Demon Award

United Utilities and OSIsoft. –
Water Production Planning Team

Intelligence & Analytics/Climate Change – Northumbrian Water Group

Morrison Utility Services & Sopra Steria

Neil Woodcock, Design and Planning Manager, SP Energy Networks

Northumbrian Water (NW) Pollution Performance Improvement Team

The Stantec Treatment Digital Delivery Team

  • Guiding Star Award

Dave Shepherd, Head of Delivery of the Wirral District, SP Energy Networks

Matt Hockaday, Head of Business Readiness, British Gas

  • Health and Safety Champion: Individual

Gurtej Multani, Corporate H&S Manager, UK Power Reserve

Lee Perkins, Engineering Trainees Team Leader in the South East region, UK Power Networks

Lucy Innes, Safety, Health, Environment and Quality Lead, UK Power Networks Services

Ryan Brown, QSE Manager, Stonbury Ltd

  • Health and Safety Champion: Initiative

“RPS Be the BEST” (Behavioural Excellence Starts Today), RPS
Lymm Safety Centre, SP Energy Networks

Morrison Utility Services & M Group Services Plant & Fleet Solutions, Morrison Utility Services

New cable strike avoidance hand tools, Affinity Water

Safety Culture Programme, SGN Ltd

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) safety licence, SSEN

StaySafe Lone Worker Safety, Celtic Anglian Water and StaySafe

  • Hero Award: Individual

Lisa Nealan, Water Supply Process Support Team Admin Assistant, Northumbrian Water Group

Lucy Innes, Safety, Health, Environment and Quality Lead, UK Power Networks Services

Meg Darling, Head of Customer Service, Spark Energy

Neal Carbonero, Community Customer Support Advisor, Affinity Water

Rob Abram, Performance Change Agent within Customer Services, United Utilities

Sabrina Corbo, Executive Vice President, Green Network

  • Hero Award: Team

Industry Operations Team, Bristol Energy

Janet Newbrook, Jay Churchman, Greg Atkinson, Dave McHugh, SP Energy Networks

South Caledonia regional teams, SSEN

Stormtroupers, UK Power Networks

The People Team, Spark Energy

  • Rising Star

Dr Laura Daniels, Project Lead in Innovation Team, UK Power Networks

Jonathan May, Graduate Mechanical Engineer, Stantec

Matthew Skeoch, Operations Team Manager, SGN Ltd

Nicky Smith, Business Leadership Graduate, Centrica

Ryan Salmon, Connections Delivery Coordinator, SP Energy Networks

Sophie Russell, Senior Design Engineer, SP Energy Network

  • Shooting Star

Barry Campbell, Head of Business Change and Project Management Office, Opus Energy

Jaffar Sahle, Project Manager, UK Power Reserve

Jessica Smith, Billing Performance Manager, Opus Energy

Kerry Duke, Delivery Manager, Morrison Utility Services

Tom Beeby, Delivery Lead, Centrica

  • Supernova Award for Long Service

Adrian Skinner, Electricity Linesman, UK Power Networks

Andrew Humby, Head of Market Participant Interaction, Utiligroup

Dave Stokes, Overhead Linesman’s Mate, SP Energy Networks

Jason Young, Morrison Utility Services

Mike Sutherland, Project Manager, Network Construction Team, Highlands and Islands region at Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN)

Nat Masters, Gas Process Specialist, Opus Energy

Stormtroupers, UK Power Networks

The 2018 Utility Week Stars Awards will be held in Manchester on 29 June. To enquire about a table, please visit: