Family honoured for a lifetime in Logistics

Friday 25 October 2019

Two titans of logistics received the industry’s ultimate accolade last night (24 October 2019) when Tommy Williams and his son John Williams were honoured at FTA’s Logistics Awards 2019 with the business group’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.

The award recognises a lifelong commitment to the freight and logistics industry and was awarded jointly to Tommy and John in recognition of the transformative work which both have undertaken during their long careers in the sector.

“Behind every great son stands a great father,” said Leigh Pomlett, President of FTA, when presenting the award, “and Tommy and John Williams are synonymous with the excellence and dedication which is required to succeed in the logistics industry. Many congratulations to them both on their incredible careers, which have inspired so many.”

Mr Williams senior began his logistics career in 1953 with a single coal delivery lorry, but soon established TDW Distribution as a significant successful logistics company, which is well regarded in the challenging Welsh transport industry.

John Williams, his son, started his career with Russell Davies, Securicor Logistics and Hutchison Ports before acquiring Maritime Transport in 2001. Since taking control, when the company ran 137 vehicles, he has turned it into one of the UK’s leading transport companies, with a turnover in excess of £330 million a year, more than 1,000 trucks and 2,000 drivers. It now the UK’s largest container road operator.

The awards ceremony, held at the Park Plaza Westminster, was attended by more than 400 of the logistics industry’s leading representatives from all modes of transport. The evening, which was hosted by comedian Ed Byrne, celebrated the companies and individuals that have made a significant contribution to the logistics and supply industry through their dedication, innovation and diligence during the past 12 months.

FTA Director of Marketing and Communications, Kevin Green, said the event showcased the very best of British industrial delivery and innovation:

“FTA’s Logistics Awards have always celebrated success, innovation and dedication, and this year was no exception. A highly anticipated event that surpassed even the greatest of expectations, this year’s ceremony certainly lived up to its reputation as the logistics occasion of the year and recognised the incredible work done by the individuals and businesses committed to keeping Britain trading.”

The full list of winners is as follows:


Most Innovative Company of the Year


Most Innovative Product of the Year

Wheely-Safe Ltd


Road Freight Operator of the Year

Collett & Sons Ltd


Rail Business of the Year

Tarmac and Railfreight Services in partnership


Air Business of the Year

Antonov Airlines


Water Business of the Year

PD Ports Group


Retail and Manufacturing Shipper of the Year

Radwell International Ltd


Public Services Operator of the Year



Van Operator of the Year

JN Bentley


Logistics Partner of the Year

The Very Enterprising Community Interest Company


Diversity Champion of the Year

Amey Fleet Services


Rising Star of the Year

Sarah-Jayne Owen - CEVA Logistics


FTA Lifetime Achievement Award

Tommy Williams and John Williams, Maritime Transport


Efficient logistics is vital to keep Britain trading, directly having an impact on more than seven million people employed in the making, selling and moving of goods.  With Brexit, new technology and other disruptive forces driving change in the way goods move across borders and through the supply chain, logistics has never been more important to UK plc. A champion and challenger, FTA speaks to Government with one voice on behalf of the whole sector, with members from the road, rail, sea and air industries, as well as the buyers of freight services such as retailers and manufacturers.