Deputy Harbour Master

The Deputy Harbour Master supports and assists the Harbour Master in running the marine department to ensure the safe use of the port and provision of marine services to shipping. They will deputise for the Harbour Master as required (such as when on holiday) and need to be suitably knowledgeable and qualified to cover this role. The Deputy Harbour Master needs:

Knowledge about marine industry and legislation, to ensure compliance and assist with audits / inspections.

Experience within the port or shipping industry, preferably a professional qualification such as Certificate of Competency or Harbour Master diploma.

Knowledge of health and safety – especially risk assessments, safe systems of work and permits to work.

Experience managing a small team, day-to-day management plus leading training and drills. Capable of responding to emergencies, investigating incidents.

To provide good customer service and liaise with port users / stakeholders

To help manage financial budgets, and order provisions for maintenance of navigation aids, work boat etc.

Possible pathways into this job

  • Start out with a 3-year marine apprenticeship (shore route) or deck cadetship (sea route) to gain experience. Gain qualifications – Diploma in Nautical Science and/or Officer of the Watch Certificate of Competency. See Marine ( or Apprenticeships | Maritime UK for the full list of marine apprenticeships options.
  • After apprenticeship gain experience of maritime operations working within the port in roles such as Lock Operator, Assistant Dock Master, VTS Operator or gain experience as a Deck Officer at sea.
  • Progress to Deputy Harbour Master role with 1 year Harbour Master diploma or advanced Certificate of Competency Chief Mate or Master.

Information about the employer

ASSOCIATED BRITISH PORTS (ABP) is the UK’s leading port operator with a network of 21 ports across Britain and handles around one-quarter of the nation’s seaborne trade, contributing £7.5 billion to the economy every year and supporting 119,000 jobs. ABP also operates one of the UK’s busiest rail terminals at Hams Hall in the Midlands.

ABP recruits directly from the marine industry and has graduate entry & apprenticeship entry schemes.