The district’s finest firms gathered at the Burgess Hall on Friday night for this year’s Hunts Post’s Huntingdonshire Business Awards.
The annual event was once again packed with the cream of Huntingsdonshire commerce, with the ceremony compered by Alan Dedicoat, the voice of Strictly Come Dancing.
Judges from the district's business world had the difficult task of deciding which of the finalists would walk away with an award in each of more than a dozen categories.
This year's Business of the Year title was awarded to TRB Lightweight Structures Ltd, of Huntingdon, which designs and manufactures lightweight composite components for the transport industry to reduce weight and lower energy consumption.
Since formation in 1954, TRB has grown into a leading international manufacturing and engineering company, with a team of more than 130 staff to support its services across design, engineering, manufacturing, quality and research.
The firm, based in Clifton Road, also scooped the Business Growth Award, recognising its progress and expansion in the last year.
The judges said of the firm: "TRB is passionate about the environment - innovative production skills help create reduced weight in mass transport which in turn lowers energy consumption. The firm prides itself on both developing and promoting people from within the company - since 2007 TRB has funded 50 employees to complete an NVQ L2 in business improvement techniques.
"They have strong strategic leadership and a business focus on growth markets including components for electric vehicles - it is planning to grow the business to £50million turnover by 2026. The firm is a worthy winner of the Business of the Year Award."
The Judges Award on the night was won by Butcher Bayley Architects, of Yaxley, which impressed our panel of judges with its passion and professionalism.
Daniel Mansfield, editor of The Hunts Post, said: "These awards, now in their 22nd year, provide recognition for companies and individuals who are contributing to the business success, innovation, best practice and positive environmental and community impact in Huntingdonshire.
"They are, undoubtedly, the district's leading awards for excellent business practice and have become hugely prestigious and highly valued, reflecting the achievement of winning companies."
Employer of the Year
Won by Zitko Consulting Ltd
Managing consultant Phil West said: "It is brilliant, we are so pleased. We are seeing year-on-year growth and have worked really hard to incentivise our staff and create a business that people want to work in. This is a business that allows staff to achieve their goals."
Won by Pathognomics Ltd
Founder and programme director, Alex Hirst, said: "This award represents two years of intense hard work. We provide expert histopathology for the medical sector and much of this is sensitive and difficult work. It is a tough market but our experts are continually developing new services and we are proud to have been recognised."
Cambridge Support Ltd
A spokesman for the company said: "We only launched the business on May 1 with a team of eight people so we are delighted to have won. We have an experienced and talented team of highly skilled people who are 100 per cent focussed on customer service."
Medium Business of the Year
Ensors Chartered Accountants
Partner James Francis said: "It is great for our staff to be recognised at these awards. We would like to thank everyone involved, the sponsors, the judges and the Hunts Post. It has been an amazing experience and it is a huge privilege to accept this award."
Business Person of the Year
Dr Mike Ashmead, founder and chairman of Encocam Ltd, who said: "I am very happy to be recognised for this award. I work with some fantastic people who, as engineers, all love what they do. After being made an OBE in June in the Queen's birthday honours list, it has been quite a year."
Business in the Community
Cambridge Precision Limited
Alison Wright said: "I am so chuffed to have won. I'm really passionate about helping the environment and the community and hope that it shows. We have worked so hard for this and I am just so shocked that we have won."
Supporting Young People Award
Mark Winstanley said: "It feels amazing to have won, we weren't expecting it. It just shows how much hard work we have put in, especially my team. They have put in so much effort and deserve this. We have done amazing and I cannot believe it."
Customer Service Award
Locks and Shades
Donna Young said: "I can't believe it, because it was the biggest category and there were so many great businesses in it, I didn't think we would win. I am really shocked, but so proud of my team's hard work to get here.
Family Business of the Year
Jonathan Pittams said: "I am really pleased that we have got this. I am the fifth generation of the store, and we are in our 160th year. Over the years, I feel that we have modernised and kept up with the latest trends, and that's what great about having generations of people working together. I am hoping that I will carry this on for another 100 years, we are chuffed to bits."
Small Business of the Year
Carly Reid said: "I feel absolutely fantastic. I am just so surprised that we won. It really does showcase our team and how hard they have worked. My husband and I have come a long way in a short period of time and I am just so pleased for us."
Business Growth Award
TRB Lightweight Structures
Richard Holland said: "It is fabulous that we have won. I was not expecting that at all. It shows how much hard work we have put in. I am so proud of our team, it has been hard work but we have done it and it has been worth it. "
Luke Butcher, from Butcher Bayley Architects, said: "I am so shocked. It was great to be nominated, but I really wasn't expecting to win. It is a good feeling, not just for me, but for the whole team. It really is recognition of all our hard work."
Business of the Year
TRB Lightweight Structures
Toni Shepherd said: "This is so amazing, we were not expecting this at all, it really is the icing of the cake. It's everything that we stand for here at TRB and we are just so happy."