5 October 2023 | Collaboration | Our Work

Winners of 2023 DfT Special Recognition Awards revealed

DfT Special Recognition awards 2023

The 2023 winners of the prestigious DfT Special Recognition awards were unveiled at Strictly Highways last night (4 October).

Created by the late Steve Berry OBE, the awards, now in their fifth year, celebrate achievements within the highways sector.

LCRIG Chair Martin Duffy handed out the awards with the winners in each category listed below:

Best use of technology in the Highways and Transportation sector – sponsored by Stabilised Pavements Ltd  

Winner: WJ Group – ThermoPrint – Revolutionising the Road Marking Sector

Judges comment – The WJ Group ThermoPrint It is a really practical innovation that not only improves the way we maintain our roads but also speeds up roadworks and makes working on the roads safer for our operatives.

Judges Highly Commended: SWARCO – The role of ITS in enhancing efficiencies and creating a more coordinated transport network throughout Derbyshire.

Essex Highways – Use of Graphene in Hot Rolled Asphalt carriageway surfacing.

HRS – Intellitag® – Making routine maintenance checks a thing of the past.


The Transport Technology Innovation award – sponsored by the Transport Technology Forum (TTF)  

Winner: Coventry City Council

Judges comment – Coventry City Council to be commended for the range of innovation they have demonstrated, it’s very refreshing to see a local authority having such an appetite for innovation and forward thinking.


Collaborative Partnership (between council(s) and supply chain) – sponsored by Tensar  

Winner: The Reintegration to Employment Programme: A collaboration between Colas, Local Authority partners and local third sector organisations

Judges comments – It was good to see Colas, Leeds and a number of organisations working together to really build an empathetic programme that targeted groups and communities that face barriers to employment.  A lot of evidence and clear collaborative working that had happened.


Net Zero Project of the Year – sponsored by JCB  

Winner: Colas and Coventry City Council – Delivering the first UK trial of Recycol: A cold-applied, in-situ, 100% recycled asphalt resurfacing solution

Judges comment – Because of the scalability, this is something that can be applied nationally and in time become much more of a standard way of applying road surfacing.


Employer Initiative of the Year award – sponsored by WJ Group  

Winner: Kier – Making Ground, a prison engagement and employment programme that supports serving prisoners and prison leavers into sustainable employment. Since July 2022, through Making Ground, 36 individuals on release and 28 on Release on Temporary Licence (ROTL) have been employed, 17 of whom gained employed through Kier’s supply chain.

Judges comment – There were some excellent entries in this category, and it was a tough category to judge. The winning entry was chosen as it had benefited many people and through collaboration with government, has resulted in a new law that will change people’s lives.  

Judges highly commended: Leeds City Council: Driving Diversity and Inclusion: Paving the Way to Success in Highways Maintenance Sector for the impact that they are making in deprived areas and priority neighbourhoods, by providing opportunities to individuals who face barriers to employment.


Highways Apprentice of the Year – sponsored by Gaist 

Winner: Macy Richards, Trainee Civil Engineer, Milestone Infrastructure

Judges comment – The submissions received were of a very high quality and it was great to see so many apprentices nominated by their colleagues.   Macy’s commitment to supporting her peers and her role as an apprenticeship ambassador, makes her an inspirational role model for others considering a career in the sector.


Best of Britain Award – sponsored by Multevo  

Winner: Richard Harris, Amey Staffordshire Highways

Judges comment – Richard was a worthy winner and his passion for supporting the community and the work that they are doing was an inspiration to read.

Earlier in the evening, the winners of the LCRIG Innovation Festival Qualifying Innovator awards were also presented with their accolades.

The winners of these awards, which were announced earlier this year, are as follows:



Award Category


The Tree Management Research Group (TMRG)


iTip Handles

Safety Handles

Fleet and Equipment



Street Lighting

Highware Care Ltd

The Janus Crash Cushion

Bridges & other Structures

Solar Gates UK


Traffic Signs & Lines

Kiely Bros Ltd

Kiely GlassMark


Connor Specialist Paving Ltd


Transport Technology


Image source: LCRIG