We would like to say a BIG CONGRATULATIONS to all the winners and highly commended finalists at the tenth Suffolk Chamber of Commerce in Lowestoft & Waveney Business Awards.
We would also like to thank all of the 2017 sponsors and everyone who has helped us to put on this event. Without them the Awards wouldn’t be the success that it is.
To see the photos from the Gala evening click here.
Apprentice / Trainee of the Year Award
Sponsored by: Peter Aldous MP for Lowestoft & Waveney
Winner: Amy Berwick - Home Group
Highly Commended: Mathew Challis - Pleasurewood Hills Family Theme Park
Amy has come through adversity and challenging times and her determination to pursue her career and deliver a professional caring service shines through in her work. She does all this whilst still giving her daughter her undivided attention. A well-deserved winner showing great initiative and sheer determination.
Business Person of the Year Award
Sponsored by: Lowestoft Rising
Winner: Neil Barrett - Oven Blitzer
Finalists: Emma Ratzer - Access Community Trust, Sara Dudley - Total Balance Wellbeing Centre
Neil's role in developing the company since 2007 into a very successful business has been vital to Oven Blitzer's success. It has created local jobs and offers a service that was clearly needed in the market. The high levels of satisfaction by customers with both the work and the customer service received is testament to Neil's drive to make the company a first class service company. He is a worthy winner of this year's award.
Commitment to Skills & Staff Development Award
Sponsored by: Sizewell C
Winner: Pleasurewood Hills Family Theme Park
Finalists: Total Balance Wellbeing Centre
A very close run this year but delighted to award Pleasurewood Hills Family Theme Park as the winner for their commitment to younger people and seasonal workers. A company that demonstrated excellence in their approach to workforce development that translated into benefits for the business.
Community Pride Award
Sponsored by: Waveney Norse
Finalists: Ormiston Denes Academy
An impressive, successful, but friendly and engaging local business that has been an exemplar in providing years of noteworthy support for its employees, the local community and both local and national charities. Matt Smith and his teams deserve special recognition for their impressive catalog of initiatives - to facilitate staff volunteer projects, develop local talent and academic achievement and to help local disadvantaged and special needs students.
Enterprise in Education Award
Sponsored by: Pleasurewood Hills Family Theme Park
Winner: Ormiston Denes Academy
Finalists: Sir John Leman High School
The judges said all entrants were excellent but Ormiston Denes Academy and Sir John Leman High School stood out the most both in terms of the plan, the execution of the plan and the evidence of that execution. It is fantastic to see inspiring teachers giving the next generation the best start in life.
Excellence in Customer Service Award (1-10)
Sponsored by: Lowestoft Vision
Winner: Coes Menswear, Lowestoft
Finalists: Coastline Carpets, Denise Brady Photography
Traditional customer service is at the heart and core of Coes, attention to detail, introducing new and exciting ways to improve their customers shopping experience whilst understanding the importance of longevity and stability see's them celebrating nearly 90 years in business as an independent retailer.
Excellence in Customer Service Award (11 +)
Sponsored by: Essex & Suffolk Water
Winner: ASAP Supplies
Finalists: Rosie's Hair Beauty & Make-Up Studio
ASAP are constantly looking to build on the great service that they offer. The importance of customer service and expected KPI's are shared regularly with the team so that everyone is on board and aware of the standard expected. Their feedback processes are a fantastic example of how customers are treated as individuals and everything that can be done, will be done, to rectify an issue and strive to ensure that everyone goes away with the positive experience.
Family Business of the Year Award
Sponsored by: Lovewell Blake
Winner: Total Balance Wellbeing Centre
Finalists: Coes Menswear, Lowestoft
Sara & Paul have worked hard to establish their business and have a commitment to improving health and well-being services in Lowestoft and the surrounding area. They base all business decisions on their own family values and their team are made to feel part of the overall Total Wellbeing family
Growing Business Award
Sponsored by: Associated British Ports Lowestoft
Winner: Marine Teak
Finalists: Oven Blitzer
A business which started in 2013 which uses teak from sustainable sources, Marine Teak are continually working to expand by adding more products to their inventory and by adding more suppliers to their growing global trade network. A growing business, one to watch.
Local Tourism/Hospitality/Leisure Award
Sponsored by: Waveney District Council
Winner: Suffolk Wildlife Trust
Finalists: The Hotel Victoria Lowestoft
Providing positive outcomes in leisure, by creating a breathing space that can be visited and explored for free every day of the year, in education, in tourism, by creating a unique visitor attraction, drawing a new demographic of visitor to the area and offering volunteering and internships opportunities and ultimately job creation.
Most Promising New Business Award
Sponsored by: East Coast College
Finalists: The Tiny Tipple Company
A strong character and commitment to break into this competitive offshore market, often dominated by the 'big bigs' should be commended. Rem67Medex provides essential service without which lives could be lost. We look forward to seeing how they grow in the future.
Recognition of Lifetime Achievement Award
Sponsored by: Archant
Recognised: John Bidwell - High Lodge
A local businessman achieving so much in his lifetime, started his business with one full time employee in 1992 and within these 25 years has grown it into a multi-million pound facility, employing nearly 50 members of staff.
A family man, leading an extremely active life, yet despite his busy lifestyle he has always found time to help others less fortunate than himself by supporting local charities, his motivation encouraged to support others by his own direct and family experiences.
An achiever, in particular the past 44 years recognised as a consistently successful National and International Sportsman, as a leading member of both the England and Great Britain Clay Target Shooting Teams representing his country at top International Events. A member of the GB Team he has won a number of additional major championships and during 2017 alone his personal achievements as a Super VET to date include 14 gold medals plus he has represented his country with shooting in the British & England Team, a truly remarkable lifetime of achievement.
A teacher, he has also helped numerous other clay target shooters of all ages at High Lodge to develop their own shooting skills and abilities and as well as publishing a book and DVD.
High Lodge was voted a Top UK Shooting Venue and comprises of high-class facilities for conferences, weddings, 9 hole golf course, fishing lakes, 19 luxury holiday Lodges and restaurant services.
Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award
Sponsored by: Ivy House Country Hotel
Winner: Rosie Kefford - Rosie's Hair Beauty & Make-Up Studio
Finalist: Martyn Norton - ACN Offshore
After finishing runner up in a previous year Rosie has shown continued entrepreneurial spirit opening yet another salon in central Norwich that is already starting to flourish. Rosie has the passion of a young entrepreneur wanting to drive her business on through expansion. It is clear that she has the determination and drive that is evident in entrepreneurs's and she is only 28 - great to see!
Business of the Year Award
Sponsored by: Suffolk Chamber of Commerce - Lowestoft & Waveney Chamber of Commerce
Finalists: Coes Menswear, Lowestoft
Beginning in Lowestoft in the 1940's, from a small boatyard on Oulton Broad, Wally Hoseason started his afloat and ashore holidays business. They spearheaded the explosion of the UK's self-catering holidays and were one of the first to advertise holidays on British TV in the 1970's.
By the year 2000, just after Wally's son James Hoseason OBE retired, Hoseasons were the leaders in UK self-catering with over 12,000 places to stay and over a million holidaymakers.
In 2010 they became part of the Hoseasons Group, now Wyndham Vacation Rentals (UK) Ltd.
Last year they were presented with the 'Youth Pledge' accreditation, with 69% of all their new employees being aged between 16 - 24. Today they employ over 300 people, with 80% of those employees living within the local area.