The winners of this year’s Herefordshire Diamond County Awards were announced at The Shirehall in Hereford on Friday 23 May.
The 2014 awards were divided into three separate categories. The small and large business awards were sponsored by last year’s winner Cargill, whilst the outstanding apprentice award was sponsored by the Herefordshire Industrial Association.
The finalists and winners were shortlisted from over 30 nominations by a judging panel of Neil Kerr, chairman of the Herefordshire Business Board; Philip Round, chief executive of Herefordshire Group Training Association and Liz Connors, Chairman of Cares Council for Cargill, who judged the business awards and Paul Deneen OBE JP DL; Bob Tabor, former High Sheriff of Herefordshire and Councillor Chris Chappell, who judged the apprentice award.
The winner of the small business award was Harrison Clark Rickerbys in Hereford while Kingspan Insulation in Pembridge won the large business award and Jay Sheffield from Arctic Circle Ltd in Hereford was named as this year’s outstanding apprentice.
Councillor Olwyn Barnett, chairman of Herefordshire Council said: “I am once again delighted with the success of the Herefordshire Diamond County Awards and the number of nominations we received from across the county. This is local recognition of the outstanding contribution our businesses and apprentices make in our communities.
“I would like to thank all of this year’s nominees and of course our finalists and winners, for everything they do for residents and communities across Herefordshire. I would also like to thank our judging panel, which has the difficult job of selecting our finalists and winners, Hereford College of Arts for designing the awards and Major Patrick Darling, deputy lord lieutenant of Herefordshire for presenting the awards at The Shirehall.”
Matt Hayes, partner and head of Harrison Clark Rickerbys' Hereford office, said: "We are delighted to have been awarded a Herefordshire Diamond County Award. This is a wonderful reward to our staff for their commitment to investment in the local community through our participation in various fundraising activities. We are also proud to have been recognised for our work which supports local apprenticeship schemes, the development of young professionals in the county and the provision of pro bono legal advice for a number of local initiatives."
John Garbutt, marketing director of Kingspan Insulation, said: “We are proud to have been chosen as the large business award winner of this year’s Herefordshire Diamond County Awards. It is welcome recognition of the contribution that Kingspan makes to Herefordshire through employment, local sourcing, education programmes, road safety initiatives and the work of the Kingspan Insulation Community Trust, which funds local community projects.”
Deborah Gittoes, managing director of Arctic Circle Ltd, said of winning apprentice Jay Sheffield: “Jay is a remarkable young man and as an apprentice beat off external sales candidates to become a technical sales engineer. Despite his youth and inexperience he has made the role his own with a positive attitude and desire to fulfil our customer’s expectations. He not only managed to complete his apprenticeship early, but also achieved very good grades in his college work. Jay is well liked and respected by both customers and work colleagues and is a credit to himself and his family; we are very proud of him.”
To find out more about the awards, visit www.herefordshire.gov.uk/diamondcountyawards.