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Adam Birch

24 Nov 2022

Neil Harper retires

On the 24th November 2022, we said goodbye to Neil Harper as he retired from Rigel Shipping after 35 years with the company, 19 of those years as a Director.

As a fresh 17 year old Neil started his broking life at L.Dens (Shipbrokers) Ltd. 40 years ago in April 1982 and fixed his first ship in their Coastal department 5 months later managing to conclude a 1,450 tonner from Middlesborough to Antwerp at a huge £5.10 per mt !

Some 5 years later Neil met the Rigel boss Kevin Coughlan for 'a chat' in the Magpie pub near Liverpool Street Station, and after 3 pints the deal to join Rigel was done.

Neil started in the Owners broking department representing a number of close clients before answering a call in 1999 from an ex colleague who had just started at Oldendorff in Germany who at the time were in need of experienced brokers. This led to a very close relationship which lasted for over 23 years until Neil's retirement. Neil managed to travel extensively and always enjoyed meeting new people all over the world. Neil will continue to serve as a Trustee of the Baltic Exchange Charitable Foundation who meet every 3 months and will no doubt swing by to see us from time time.

Neil has always been a keen Golf player and been a member of the Baltic Golf Society for many years. To date he has won the Baltic Gold Cup on 6 occasions.

He will be missed by his colleagues and numerous industry friends from all over the world who should be aware that now he is retired to expect a call to catch up over a lunch or dinner.

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