Entries open for new Purbeck business awards

A new awards scheme has been launched, not as an excuse for a party but to recognise the quality and range of businesses across Purbeck, according to its organiser.

At a critical time for many, having survived the Covid pandemic and now faced with high inflation, rising interest rates and soaring energy costs, the Purbeck Business Awards is focussed on giving a boost to grassroot businesses and it’s free to enter.

Biz awards launch

The launch of the inaugural Purbeck Business Awards at the hotel and event venue Kingston Country Courtyard near Corfe Castle

Idea has taken off

Nigel Reeve from Marketing West SW set up the Bridport Business Awards just before lockdown.

Since then his idea has taken off with business awards organised for Bournemouth, Bridport, Christchurch, Dorchester, Lyme Regis, Poole, Sherborne, Weymouth, Wimborne and Shaftesbury. Now Nigel has turned his attention to Purbeck. He said:

“I used to work at the radio station 2CR in Bournemouth and along with my girlfriend at the time I used to walk along the Purbeck coastline. I fell in love with the area – it’s fantastic!

Caroline Finch and Nigel Reeve at Biz awards launch

Caroline Finch from the Swanage Chamber of Trade with the organiser of the Purbeck Business Awards, Nigel Reeve from Marketing West SW

“Not an excuse for a party”

Speaking at the launch event on Wednesday 28th September 2022 at Kingston Country Courtyard near Corfe Castle, Nigel added:

“These are grassroots business awards and not an excuse for a party. The focus is on the entries, and not the event.

“It’s a chance for local businesses to get together and the award presentation will also be streamed live to reach the maximum number of people.

“The main aim is to promote the range and quality of local business. The judging is independent and online with five to six judges for each category – they’ll be looking for the businesses who care and have an enthusiasm for their product.”

Biz awards launch

The awards are an opportunity for business owners to network and get recognition for what they do

“We all need to support each other”

Attending the event was chair of the Swanage Chamber of Trade and local councillor, Caroline Finch. She said:

“I know there’s so many good businesses in Swanage and across Purbeck but so often we don’t hear enough about them.

“There are some that have gone to great lengths to be good employers and make their businesses environmentally friendly and sustainable – they should rightly get recognition for that.

“In the current economic climate we all need to support each other and I hope lots of local companies will submit an entry.”

Categories to enter

  • Best tourism attraction/experience
  • Accommodation provider of the year
  • Arts, crafts and local market stallholders
  • Best place to work
  • Café, pub, casual dining
  • Excellence in customer service
  • Family business of the year
  • Green/eco-business
  • Health and fitness
  • Beauty and fashion
  • Independent business
  • New business of the year
  • Young entrepreneur/rising star
Kingston Country Courtyard

The listed 16th century barn at Kingston Country Courtyard where the lunchtime awards ceremony will be held

“It really is worth entering”

As well as the Swanage Chamber of Trade, others already supporting the inaugural Purbeck Business Awards include Battens Solicitors, NFU Mutual Wessex, and The Dorset Concierge.

The website Dorset Biz News is backing all the business awards across the county. Its editor Andrew Diprose said at the launch:

“When I was business editor of the Bournemouth Daily Echo, I became a bit cynical about awards but these ones are different and reach businesses that other awards don’t reach. These are for a whole strata of businesses that wouldn’t normally enter awards.

“It really is worth entering – for the sake of half an hour of your time, you could get recognition, publicity and coverage for your business!”

Kingston Country Courtyard

Kingston Country Courtyard is hosting the awards ceremony in February 2023

Further information

  • Entrance is free and a business can enter as many categories as they wish. Also clients and customers can nominate a business. The winner will not necessarily be the one with the most nominations – it’s what they say which is important.
  • The deadline for entries is Friday 23rd December 2022.
  • The awards ceremony will be at lunchtime on Thursday, 23rd February 2023 at the Kingston Country Courtyard near Corfe Castle. It is open to all and places are at cost price. If shortlisted, then a place at the awards ceremony is complimentary.
  • To enter or nominate, go to the Purbeck Business Awards website

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