Success is top of the bill at Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony

PUBLISHED: 08:01 18 June 2018

The second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO

The second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO

Saffron Photo 2018

The district’s best in business were celebrated last Thursday at the second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony.

The second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTOThe second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO

Held at Quendon Hall, the awards brought together a range of innovative and unique firms and organisations, with Dunmow firm Alloy Fabweld scooping the coveted Business of the Year award.

The event was organised by Archant, publisher of the Saffron Walden Reporter and Dunmow Broadcast, and was hosted by BBC Essex presenters Steve Scruton and Ian Wyatt.

Editor of the Reporter and Broadcast, Daniel Mansfield said: “After hugely successful inaugural awards last year, it was great to see so many firms showing their support once again this time around.

The second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTOThe second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO

“The number and variety of entries we received was a true reflection of the strength and diversity of the business community in Uttlesford and it was a pleasure to be able to give them all a platform to celebrate their successes and innovations.

“We would like to extend our congratulations to all our finalists and winners. We can’t wait to do it all again next year.”

As well taking the Business of the Year Award, Alloy Fabweld also won the Business in the Community Award, and the Medium Business of the Year, making it a hat-trick of success.

Shaun Pledger and Jody Edmondson: “This is great. There were some fantastic judges. They were genuinely lovely people and were genuinely interested in our business. The judges made it for us.”

The second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTOThe second Uttlesford Business Awards ceremony. Picture: SAFFRON PHOTO

Also taking home prizes on the night was Hashtag Travel Group, which was crowned New Business of the Year.

Daniel Albon and Neil Bird: “This was a bit of a surprise, so much so we didn’t plan a speech. It’s superb, we are really pleased. It is down to a lot of hard work. We are pleased with what we have achieved and we are excited to see where the next 12 months are going to take us.”

Andy Coleman, winner of the Business Person of the Year award, said: “I’m really pleased – it’s a credit to all the hard work of our team. We’ve done so well going from only one company to six in a short space of time.”

Bradley Penton, Apprentice of the Year winner, said: “I’m relieved more than anything. I’ve been working there for three and a half years now and I’m very happy to have won this. I want to thank my boss for all his support too.”

Bradley’s boss, the executive head chef at The Cricketers, Justin Greig, had a few words to say too: “I have had more than 200 chefs and this young lad is a hero to the other chefs – he is so dedicated to his work and his job and he has to do all his college work. He’s the most popular guy and it’s good that we’re getting young guys into the industry. Honestly, he’s the best trainee I’ve ever had. And it’s all because of his hard work.”

A spokesman for Wedding Day Angel, winner of the Online Innovator of the Year, said: “It’s amazing – that’s three awards we’ve got now and two of those are this year. We are just so happy. We’re now looking forward to expanding – now we know what we’re working towards. Up next, we’re hoping to team up with local people and across the country and expand our website.”

Suzie Bawden, winner of the Judges Award, said: “I was a finalist last year and this year. I was not expecting this at all. I’m just shocked. I thought I was just up for a nomination – I didn’t know I could get this award. I was not expecting it. I’ve been at Waitrose for three years now and I’ve been overwhelmed by everyone there. I have never seen so many people at a company trying to help the community and do their bit in society – it’s amazing. Most of all I want to thank Jim Brewin, the store’s manager – he’s been my north star.”

Craig Clarkson and Jody Edmondson, of Small Business of the Year winners Flexi Group Ltd, said: “This has been a fantastic year for us and our company. We are humbled and honoured.”

Stephanie Harris and her father Terry Jack, of The Rose Garden, winner of the Retailer of the Year, said: “I am thrilled to bits. It is a good reward for our staff. We are a family company, and the girls are like family. It is a good reward for them because they work so hard.”

Paul Marshall, Jamie King, and Richard Timpson, from Waitrose, which scooped the Employer of the Year award, said: “We feel really proud to have won and we would like to thank the community for their support. I think being in the town since 1985 shows you can establish a business and thrive.”

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