Meet the ESCA Team

Stephen Dawe, Chairman - ESCA

Based in London, England, Stephen is Engineering & Business Development Manager at Vodafone Group Services Ltd with 32 years of experience in the submarine systems industry and an extensive background in engineering, system development, management and business development.

Recent career highlights include serving Cable & Wireless Communications as Director of Submarine Systems Engineering for CWC Wholesale Solutions and development and implementation of 4 repurposed cable projects with a total length exceeding 6400 km.

Prior to leading business development for Vodafone Submarine Systems Engineering, Stephen was Director of Submarine Systems Engineering at Cable & Wireless Global Networks where he led a team that grew C&W’s international consultancy business to over £11 million. His expertise includes international connectivity and carrier commercial arrangements for submarine cables. He was the Network Manager for the Japan-US Cable and has managed a wide range of diverse submarine systems, Stephen is a regular contributor to the SubOptic, Chairman and Executive Committee Member of ESCA and represents Vodafone on a number of cross industry committees.

Peter Jamieson, Vice Chairman - ESCA

Peter has worked in the telecommunications industry for over twenty years and is currently Principal Engineer for the Virgin Media core fibre optic network part of the Liberty Global Group, which includes Submarine Cables. An Incorporated Engineer and Member of Institution of Engineering Technology, Peter also sits on the British Standards Committee for Optical radiation safety and laser equipment. He is also the Vice Chairman of ESCA.

Courtney French- ESCA

Courtney has worked in the offshore wind industry for 12 years and is currently Fisheries Engagement Manager for EDF. Previously, Courtney worked as Commercial Fisheries Manager for Ørsted across their UK portfolio responsible for managing the relationship between Ørsted and commercial fisheries stakeholders. Courtney sits on a number of industry working groups in relation to fisheries and offshore wind. Prior to working for Ørsted Courtney worked as an environmental consultant undertaking environmental impact assessments, pre and post construction environmental surveys and fisheries liaison.

Rhys Ambrose - ESCA

Rhys has worked in the marine industry for 10 years and is currently a Senior Cable Engineer at Vodafone working in their Submarine Systems Engineering department. Rhys’ primary marine experience was as a Hydrographic Surveyor, conducting nearshore surveys around the UK coast including MCA, DEFRA and various renewable energy projects. Rhys subsequently joined ASN and worked in roles including Cable Route Engineer and Project Manager of APMMSA and spent time offshore on cable surveys and installations. Since joining Vodafone, Rhys’ role is primarily focussed on new submarine cable projects and frequently engages with various stakeholders, positioning him well for his work with the MSG.

Antony Zymelka, Renewables & Power Cables Sub Group Chairman - ESCA

Antony Zymelka is a very well known cable focused professional who has amassed around40 years of experience in the Subsea Cable industry and has been involved in approaching 100 Subsea Cable projects worldwide.

Having spent many years Offshore on various Cable Ships, and Onshore in Design, Engineering and Project / Senior Management, his Subsea Cable Installation Operations, Installation Engineering and Offshore and Onshore Management experience is extensive. This experience encompasses Power, Telecommunication, Umbilical, Military and Scientific Cables.

Through Antony’s involvement with the ESCA Renewables and Power Cable Sub-Group, they have composed various industry guidelines including: Proximity, Subsea Power Cable Installation and Repair. Antony is also a member of CIGRE and is currently sitting on the CIGRE working group defining 66kV testing guidelines.

Chris Willey, Technical & Regulatory Sub Group Chairman - ESCA

Chris Willey is Director of Network Construction Services at Pelagian. He also is Chair of the ESCA Technical and Regulatory Sub-Group. In his role at Pelagian, Chris manages variously, a number of cable installation contracts, permitting projects and submarine cable maintenance activities. Chris also represents GTT for cable maintenance and industry liaison roles. Previously, Chris worked for SubCom, where he was director for their permitting activities related to new submarine cable system construction and maintenance activities. Chris has worked in the cable industry for 46 years, previously having worked for Cable & Wireless Marine, originally based on the cableships as Cable Engineer and ROV Pilot, before moving to office based activities including managing the Maintenance and Construction Divisions.

Stephen Holden - ESCA

Steve has over 38 years in the submarine and telecommunication industries; firstly at Cable and Wireless (Marine) then Lumen and most recently at Global Marine Systems Ltd as the Maintenance Account Director. Steve has also been actively involved with cable protection for over 23 years and is presently on the Executive Committee of both the ICPC, ESCA and is the GMSL representative for NASCA. Having worked for both suppliers and maintenance authorities and experienced both marine and terrestrial working environments Steve has a good practical grasp of the submarine cable industry and its many internal and external environmental challenges in particular the growing interaction between regulators, renewables and submarine cables.

Chris Briggs - ESCA

Andrew Nunn - ESCA

Andrew has worked in the telecommunications industry for over 17 years and is currently a subsea designer and shore end installation manager at BT Group working as part of the BT Subsea team. Andrews primary marine experience was in the intertidal and wet to dry transition areas but latterly his main experience has been in the offshore installation of new cable systems and repair of cable systems around the UK and into Europe. In addition to work on new projects, Andrew works within BT Group to operate and maintain an extensive submarine cable network around the UK and globe.

Daniel Duckett - ESCA

Craig English - ESCA

I joined the Merchant Navy in 1990 as Officer cadet working on oil tankers with B.P. On qualifying as a navigator in 1995, I joined Cable & Wireless (later to become Global Marine), installing subsea telecoms cables around the world, spending large portions of my seagoing career on installations including FLAG, SEA-ME-WE 3, EAC1, EAC2, TAT-14 and smaller festoon systems. Thanks to the dot com boom (before the bust) I enjoyed an accelerated profile and qualified as a Master Mariner, being seconded to the office to manage the ACMA agreement in my final year. In 2004 I took the decision to retrain as a Salvage Master for the MoD, gaining a suite of salvage skills including that of a commercial diver. I studied law with the Lloyds Maritime academy at night schools and after 5 years attained a Masters degree in Maritime & multimodal transport law. In 2009 I joined Briggs Marine as Director for Subsea Services, providing: Subsea power cable Repairs/Replacement, Salvage, Diving & Oil Spill Response services. My remit was to grow a subsea power cable division and break into the renewable energy sector. As a company we now have several frameworks with power cable owners, including connectors, interconnectors, wind farm operators and OFTOs, maintaining over 1400 subsea power cables in NW Europe.

I currently stand as a member of the executive committee for the Association of Diving Contractors, promoting safety and standards throughout the UK diving industry.

Paul Betts - ESCA

Chris Lomax- ESCA

Chris was a geotechnical engineer originally, but 35 years later is now more of a generalist. After 9 years working in the onshore construction industry, he started working in subsea telecom in 1998, soon followed by experience in offshore wind and interconnectors. This work is primarily , but not entirely, pre-consent, relating to early stage feasibility, optioneering and concept / Pre-FEED studies including route and landfall selection and development, survey specification and management, CBRA and input to EIA and consents. He has also led R&D projects in tidal stream and wave power. In 2022 Chris joined Wood Thilsted, a specialist offshore wind consulting engineer. As part of the RPSG he managed the update of Guideline 17 (Testing), input to the update of Guideline 6 (Proximity) and is currently leading a recently formed group looking at guidance on cable spacing.

Dr Anja Drews - ESCA

Anja has been involved with the German renewable industry for the past 17 years, and with the power cables for German’s offshore wind industry since its inception nine years ago. As a geoscientist she completed a PhD in physics specialised in renewable energies, within the field of energy meteorology – the branch of meteorology which deals with energy resources that make sun and wind generation viable. Anja joined Germany’s newly formed Transpower TSO GmbH at the time of the first commercial wind farm and export power cable - into what has now become TenneT Offshore GmbH, the TSO that provides grid connections to all windfarms in the German Bight. After dealing with project development and permits for offshore grid connections she moved to TenneT’s installation and construction department. In her present position she works as a project manager for offshore power cable installations and is responsible for TenneT’s UXO strategy.

Peter Watson - ESCA

Peter Fisk - ESCA

Chris Sturgeon - ESCA

Chris is a master mariner with 30 years in the submarine cable industry. With 10 years experience commanding cable ships and managing marine operations together with extensive work in the design, development, planning and delivery of cable projects, Chris now provides advisory, expert and marine warranty services as CEO of Red Penguin. In recent years he has worked extensively across the industry on a range of major infrastructure projects to identify and control risk and to improve project outcomes.

Colin Spencer, Director and Company Secretary - ESCA

Clive has worked in the submarine cable industry for over 40 years and is currently the Company Director and Secretary of ESCA as well as the Secretary of the Atlantic Cable Maintenance Agreement (ACMA). He also works from a financial analysis perspective on the SAT-3/WASC/SAFE and EASSy cable systems and is the Website Administrator for the North America Zone Agreement (NAZ). Clive previously worked for BT for over 30 years within the subsea operations and maintenance team, dealing with subsea cable maintenance agreement, operational and related financial aspects. In 2011 he set up his own independent business working within the subsea industry from both a UK and international perspective.

John Wrottesley, Liaison Officer - ESCA

John is the Liaison Officer for ESCA, working to raise the profile of subsea cables with key stakeholders in Europe, engaging with Government departments, conservation bodies, other industry groups, and effectively liaising on all subsea cable related topics. John has worked in the submarine cable industry for 13 years, starting in marine planning, and then in permitting and consenting both for new installation projects and cable maintenance worldwide - within telecommunications, power, renewables and subsea cables relating to Oil & Gas. He was previously the chairman of the ESCA Technical and Regulatory Subgroup (TRSG) with good knowledge of international law and the regulatory and legislative frameworks for subsea cables.

Claire Muir, Liaison Support Officer - ESCA

Claire is ESCA’s Liaison Support Officer, working to increase awareness, improve communications and support ongoing liaison activities of ESCA with external stakeholders across Europe.

Claire has worked in the marine sector since 2012. Prior to her role at ESCA Claire worked for The Crown Estate over a range of marine portfolios, including telecommunication cables and offshore wind development.

Neil Baylis, UK Legal Advisor - ESCA

Neil is a partner at CMS in London where he practises competition, commercial and regulatory law. He is a member of the CMS subsea cables practice group. He is the legal adviser to ESCA (and was the adviser to its predecessors, Subsea Cables UK and UK CPC). Neil prepared the constitutional documents of ESCA and also wrote and maintains the competition law guidelines that are found on the ESCA website. Neil attends each plenary meeting to update members on legal developments and also to ensure the plenaries are conducted in full compliance with the competition law guidelines. Having been involved in the subsea cables industry for nearly twenty years he understands the legal and commercial issues affecting members’ businesses.

Aaron Mair - ESCA

Aaron Mair is a director and consultant at Port Hill Marine Limited. He has over 43 years’ experience in the marine industry including 28 years in the fishing industry where he was Captain and Owner of his own vessels. He also spent a number of years in the Merchant Navy as a chief officer and worked in the Offshore Oil and Gas industry. He came ashore in 2002 and worked for the UK government Marine Management Organisation, where he was a Marine Officer and Marine Licensing and Biological coordinator for the North of England.

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