Stena Line announces first female captain with Lynette Bryson at helm of Holyhead-Dublin superferry

Stena Line says Brexit and the pandemic has led to a shortage of people needed to fill vacant roles and address the huge skills shortage in the sector.

With a shortage of skilled labour within the shipping industry there is currently fierce competition for talent.

Stena Line believes that if the shipping industry is going to solve its jobs’ crisis then it must encourage more women to work in careers at sea, in roles that are often still viewed as for men.

The firm announced that the company has appointed its first female Captain, 33-year-old Lynette Bryson, who became Master on the Stena Adventurer in the Irish Sea. She also has a full female Bridge team of officers.

The Stena Adventurer is one of the largest vessel in Stena Line’s fleet.

It serves the key Dublin to Holyhead route, where it operates four services a day and as Night Master Lynette Bryson and her team are in charge of two of those trips.

Stena Line Adventurer

Since joining Stena Line in 2017 Lynette has worked herself through the ranks, gaining four promotions as a result of her professional, dedicated and diligent approach to her key leadership on the vessel.

Captain Bryson said: “I am incredibly proud to be sailing as Master on the Stena Adventurer, and as the first female Master at the company; this could not have been done without the support of my colleagues at Stena Line.

“As a young woman I always dreamt of a career at sea and never thought I could ever achieve being a Captain. I hope my position can encourage more young women to follow my path and have a successful maritime career.”

The Swedish firm has set itself a target of appointing 30% females managers by the end of 2022. In a sector where only 2% of the 1.2 million seafarers are women this is an ambitious target that lays down a gauntlet for other companies to try to achieve.

Margaret Jensen Dickson, Group Head of People at Stena Line, said: The shipping sector is in a jobs’ crisis and there is a shortage of people in every part of the industry. No matter whether the problem is caused by Brexit, or the pandemic, there is simple solution and that is to encourage more women to work in shipping.

“The people shortage is one of the biggest crises Stena Line has ever faced and we are throwing the kitchen sink at it. Onboard roles can no longer be seen as a male domain. With the appointment of Lynette Bryson as our first female Captain we have shown that woman can and will succeed at sea and Stena Line will be here to support them.”

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