PIC: Mendip Business Awards Winners
PIC: Mendip Business Awards Winners and Finalists

On Thursday 30 May 2019 at the Royal Bath and West Show, 180 people gathered in the Members Marquee for a night of anticipation and excitement to find out which Mendip businesses had become award winners.

The night kicked off with welcome drinks for guests which was sponsored by Red Berry Recruitment Ltd, this was followed by canapes and dinner provided by Food4You.

Tables were stocked with drinks gifted by Brothers and Mallets Cider, Wise Bartender, Worleys Cider, Glastonbury Spring Water, Wild Beer Co and Lilley’s Cider.

Cheese boards were also served which was provided by Barbers Farmhouse Cheese.

We would like to thank all those local businesses who sponsored the event for their generosity and support.

After dinner, our guest speaker Helen Lacey, Managing Director of Red Berry Recruitment Ltd headed to the stage to deliver her speech.

During her speech, Helen said: ‘‘To everyone who has entered, been shortlisted and to the winners – well done for being proud of your businesses, being proud about what you do and well done for taking the step to enter.’’

Helen went on to say: ‘‘Entering Awards is also a great time to reflect, and in some cases, evaluate how your business has performed in relation to the category you are entering.

‘‘The Mendips are a lovely part of Somerset so let’s use this opportunity to celebrate all the amazing businesses we have.’’

The night continued with kind words from our key sponsors, Cllr Ros Wyke, Leader of Mendip District Council, Chris Davis, Centre Manager of Clarks Village and Rupert Cox, Chief Executive of The Bath & West Society.

The host for the evening was Ben McGrail, Somerset Correspondent at ITV News West Country joined the stage. Ben welcomed everyone to the awards ceremony and was lucky enough to announce all the winners and finalists.

Ben introduced the night by saying: ‘‘Local businesses are the key to Somerset’s success, and one of our favourite parts of the Awards is uncovering and celebrating all those amazing, but often hidden, local success stories out there.

He goes on to say: ‘‘For those of you who made the shortlist, but who don’t end up as winners or finalists. The judges felt you had showed something that was particularly worthy of note, and therefore you should all feel very proud tonight.’’

Ben continued with hosting the eventing and announcing all the winners and finalists. Some of the winners have kindly provided quotes below about their experience of winning a Mendip Business Award.

Small Business of the Year was won by Shieldmaiden. They specialise in Norse products including drinking horns, handcrafted Artisan Mead as well as Viking jewellery and clothing. Stuart and Fiona from Shieldmaiden said: ‘‘Winning small business of the year at the Mendip Business Awards 2019 was truly amazing. To be recognised for all our hard work, late hours and restless nights amidst a high calibre pool of entries was truly humbling.

‘‘A huge thank you to everyone involved in the event and of course to our customers who have made this possible. We look forward to expanding the business in the future and seeing you all at the event in 2020!”

Apprentice of the Year was won by Emily Leigh of Knight’s Fish Restaurant. They have served Fish and Chips for over 100 years and said: ‘‘We are all very excited at Knight’s with Emily winning her award, Emily says it’s the first time I have ever won anything”.

Customer Service Excellence was won by Christopher Young Opticians. They are an opticians in Shepton Mallet and offer niche eyewear and exceptional eyecare. Chris from Christopher Young Opticians said: ‘‘We were absolutely thrilled to win the award, especially when we were pitted against such strong competition.

‘‘It was a privilege to be able to rub shoulders with such a diverse range of businesses, all at the top of their game. I had no idea there was such an eclectic array of talent in the area, all working hard for success, and I am very proud to be part of this wonderful community.’’

Below is a full list of all this year’s winners and finalists.

Apprentice of the Year – Sponsored by Strode College

Winner: Emily Leigh of Knight’s Fish Restaurant

Finalists: Jessica Catley of Mulberry Co Design Ltd and Toby Davey of CBRE Managed Services Ltd / Clarks

Business of the Year – Sponsored by NFU Mutual, Wells

Winner: Netitide Ltd

Finalists: Burns the Bread Ltd and Knight’s Fish Rstaurant


Community Enterprise of the Year – Sponsored by Aster Group

Winner: Yeast Scrapstore

Finalists: Children’s World and Avalon School


Customer Service Excellence – Sponsored by 3 Solutions Ltd

Winner: Christopher Young Opticians

Finalists: Jungle Property and Mulberry Co Design Ltd


Family Business of the Year – Sponsored by Wainwright & Co Ltd

Winner: John Franklin Kitchens

Finalists: Knight’s Fish Restaurant and Burns the Bread Ltd


International Business of the Year – Sponsored by Swan Hotel, Wells

Winner: Ayton Global Research

Finalists: Sharpham Park and Fragrant Earth


Market Trader of the Year – Sponsored by Mendip District Council

Winner: Somerset Smokehouse

Finalists: Chateau Du Savon and Polly Victoria Vintage


New Business of the Year – Sponsored by Killens

Winner: LOAF Bakehouse

Finalists: Wise Bartender and Lodestone Property


Retail & Tourism Hospitality – Sponsored by Kilver Court Designer Village

Winner: Middlewick Holiday Cottages

Finalists: The Cross at Croscombe and The Cheeky Bean


Small Business of the Year – Sponsored by Burton Sweet

Winner: Shieldmaiden

Finalists: Spaceworks Interiors and Four Legged Fancies


Taste of Mendip – Sponsored by Old Mill

Winner: James Chocolates

Finalists: Somerset Smokehouse and Rye Bakery


Lifetime Achievement Award – Presented by Mendip District Council, The Royal Bath and West Society and Clarks Village
Angela Yeoman OBE

Cllr Ros Wyke, Leader of Mendip District Council, re-joined the stage to present the final award of the evening, The Lifetime Achievement Award. Cllr Wyke began by saying the award ‘‘is an opportunity to mark the special contribution of an individual who has been at the heart of one the Mendip’s most extraordinary stories and industries.’’

Cllr Wyke presented the award to Angela Yeoman OBE for her achievements on the family ran business quarrying company, Foster Yeoman, which was established in 1923 and Angela took over in 1949.

Angela and her husband ‘‘believed that the future of quarrying lay in investing in developing larger quarries and greater mechanisation to serve growing demand. They also were keen to explore the use of rail transport and sea freight.’’

Foster Yeoman was sold in 2006 and by that time had grown to a £150m business. Today it is owned by Aggregate Industries.


Follow us on Instagram at @mendipbizawards and watch ‘Highlights’ to see the night of awards ceremony unfold. Follow us on Twitter at @MendipBizAwards and Facebook @MendipBusinessAwards for updates of the winners and finalists.


Visit our website for more information about the Mendip Business Awards: www.mendipbusinessawards.co.uk

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