The highlight of the business year in the town is Sevenoaks Business Awards, organised by Sevenoaks Town Team, and the Gala Awards evening was held on Friday 20th October.
Establishing the winners is a long process that started in mid-August when the public were asked to nominate businesses in one or more of six categories. The nominated businesses were then asked to complete an entry form and as a result there were 28 in this year’s competition – the most ever.
Judging took place in early October, and an online vote to establish the public’s favourite business closed with over 3000 votes cast – again a record.
The Awards evening was held at The Bat & Ball Centre, an ideal modern venue where state-of-the-art lighting and sound made for exactly the right atmosphere for this special “black tie” evening. The guest speaker was Michael Gietzen, the man whose company created the 2023 London New Year Fireworks and organises many major UK and worldwide events which everyone will have seen.
The Winning businesses were:
- Independent Business of the Year sponsored by Manak Solicitors – The Hart Spa
- Larger Business of the Year sponsored by Sevenoaks Town Council– Specsavers
- Sustainability in Business sponsored by Sevenoaks Chamber – COOK
- New Business less than 5 years old sponsored by Hoath House – The TN Card
- Micro-Enterprise sponsored by Knocker & Foskett Solicitors – The TN Card
- Customer Choice sponsored by Specsavers – Leslie Warren
There is also a “Judges Award” sponsored by Warners Solicitors which goes to a business or person that has provided a significant contribution to economic development and the local community. This was won by Barry Dennis. Barry is the long-serving landlord of The Anchor pub in the heart of the town centre. Over several years he has been instrumental in many initiatives in the Sevenoaks, even creating his own music festival in 2023.
Runner-up in this category was won by a policeman. PC Nick Hubbard has been very successful in dealing with (mainly business) crime in Sevenoaks and has become a role model for others.
The main sponsor were Manak Solicitors.