Swansea University has awarded an honorary degree to Nigel Short, Chairman at Scarlets Rugby Football Club and director and shareholder at award-winning Welsh whisky company, Penderyn.

The award was presented to Mr Short today (19 December 2018) at the University’s degree ceremony for the College of Engineering. 

Nigel Short was born and bred in the Cynon Valley and has risen to become one of the most successful businessmen in Wales.  He has been involved with a number of successful companies but his longest appointment to date is with Penderyn.

Nigel was educated at Aberdare Boys Grammar School.  In an early indication of one of his future endeavours, Nigel played prop for the school team and featured in two Welsh secondary school final trials.

He left school at 16 and joined the family business, spending 25 years working in the steel industry undertaking sophisticated on-site logistics and employing 1,500 people in six different countries.

When the family business was sold to Brambles Ltd, Nigel ran the European and North American operations until 2002 when he started with Penderyn.  Penderyn has since become an iconic Welsh brand and a great success story.

His interest in Rugby had always been evident and for the last eight years Nigel has enjoyed his role as Chairman at Scarlets RFC, guiding the club to numerous play-offs and semi-finals as well as winning the Pro 12 league in 2017. He also coached the Whitland Juniors for seven years.

He has held many business directorships throughout his career including at Short Bros Energy Ltd, Short Bros Homes Ltd and Hygrove Homes Ltd. 

He also runs a 400-acre organic lamb and beef farm in Carmarthenshire.

On receiving his award, Nigel Short said: “I am extremely honoured and delighted to receive the award of DLitt.  I have lived full-time and part-time in Swansea for the last 36 years and having seen my wife and just this year my daughter graduate from Swansea University the place holds a special place in my heart. 

I look forward to building stronger bonds with the University in the future and am grateful to all those involved. Swansea University is an integral part of Swansea and its unique surroundings - it truly is a special place.”