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Billson and McVittie recognised at NACR&HP Awards

UK: Linda McVittie, J&E Hall Scottish sales manager and John Billson, MD of Beijer Ref UK and Ireland, won special awards at last nights’s National ACR and Heat Pump Awards. 

The first industry event since the covid-19 lockdown ensured a full house at the event at the Midland Hotel, Manchester. 

In a long list of awards, Linda McVittie was announced as Woman of the Year and John Billson won the special ACR Champion Award. 

Recently named in the annual Top 50 Women in Engineering award by the Women’s Engineering Society (WES), Linda McVittie has spent more than 30 years in the refrigeration industry. Joining Star Refrigeration in 1990 as a sales office administrator, she combined work with studies, achieving a BSc in Building Services Engineering to become a technical sales engineer. After spells with Johnson Controls and Trane, McVittie joined J & E Hall in  2013.

A Fellow of the Institute of Refrigeration and a chartered engineer, Linda McVittie was also the first woman to chair the Scottish Branch of the IoR. 

In a fitting end to the evening, John Billson was announced as this year’s recipient of the coveted ACR Champion Award. Presented in commemoration of the late former editor of ACR Journal, Phil Creaney, the ACR Champion Award recognises the contribution of an individual to the industry.

After many years as a time-served engineer, John Billson joined Dean & Wood as northern region sales manager in 1993. Rising through the ranks of national sales manager and vice president of sales and marketing, he became MD of Beijer Ref UK and Ireland in 2004.

Multi award winning Birkenhead-based contractor Sure Solutions continued its winning ways picking up two awards – the coveted ACR Contractor of the Year Award and the Environmental Initiative category for its sustainability programme. 

Elsewhere, Toshiba won the ACR Product of the Year Award for its seventh generation SMMS-u VRF system, while Refrigeration Product of the Year went to Bitzer UK for its range of Ecolite range of condensing units.

The full list of winners is:

ACR Ancillary Product
Mitsubishi Electric – Plasma Quad Connect

ACR Contractor
Sure Solutions

ACR Product
Toshiba – Seventh Generation VRF

ACR Project
Exi-tite and KPR Mechanical – Chilled water refit at the Midland Hotel

Chiller Product
Aermec UK – TBA Glycol Free Chiller

Secon and AUK Distribution

Environmental Initiative
SURE Solutions – Sure Sustainability Program

Refrigeration Project
ASDA & CBES – ASDA Adiabatic Solution Rollout

Refrigeration Product
Bitzer UK – ECOLITE range of condensing units

Training Provider
Grimsby Institute

Air Source Project
R A Brown Heating Services – Family Dream Home

Domestic Ground Source Project
Finn Geotherm UK – Six-phase district heating scheme using GSHP

Heat Pump Installer
Calibrate Energy Engineering

Heat Pump Product
Vaillant – aroTHERM Plus

Marketing Initiative
Daikin UK – Energy for Change campaign

Woman of the Year
Linda McVittie

Phil Creaney ACR Champion Award
John Billson

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