Staffs designer sails into first place at Superyacht competition

“I'm still a little in shock, but it's an amazing achievement! I'm so grateful of the opportunity and had a great time.”

Chris Mobley, BA (Hons) Transport Design

A Staffordshire University student has scooped the top prize in a national design competition for the second year running.

Chris Mobley, studying BA (Hons) Transport Design, has been named winner of the Superyacht UK Young Designer Competition 2018 during the London Boat Show.

The competition put the skills of ten university students under the spotlight, challenging them transform a ship into a luxury boat in just 36 hours.

Chris, 21 from Blythe Bridge, said: “Awards and competitions such as this are great. They give students like me a chance to shine but also travel and meet new people.

“I'm still a little in shock, but it's an amazing achievement! I'm so grateful of the opportunity and had a great time.”

Chris impressed the judges with his design, which kept key elements of the existing ship and incorporated new features including a beach club and a docking area for other small vessels.

As part of the prize, Chris has been awarded an internship at Pendennis Shipyard in Falmouth, which is world-renowned for producing custom built boats and yachts.

“The placement with Pendennis will be a great opportunity for me to start my career after I leave university. It will help further develop my skills, knowledge and also network with the industry.” Chris commented.

The designs were judged by a panel of industry experts before going on display at the London Boat Show, which is attended by hundreds of naval architects, prestigious boat-builders, insurance companies and design houses from across the globe.

Judge Peter Brown, of Burgess Yachts, said: "The UK remains a global hub for superyacht design and Superyacht UK are keen to help nurture the next generation of home grown design talent.

“The core skill of hand sketching is increasingly rare and is often dismissed in favour of software generated design work, and so the challenge for young designers becomes one of differentiating themselves from much of the competition.”

This is the second consecutive year that Staffordshire University has claimed top spot in the competition after BA (Hons) Transport Design student Christpoher Karam won in 2017.

Dan Lewis, Course Leader for Transport Design, added: “We're absolutely delighted for Chris. It's fantastic news that one of our students has won for a second year running against tough competition.

“It's a brilliant competition and the placement prize is such a great opportunity and launch pad for Chris’ career. The recognition of our student's work shows the versatility of our transport designers who can take on any brief thrown at them.”

Discover more about Staffordshire University's design courses by attending an Open Day. Find dates and book your place here.

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