The first ever business awards for the entire Royal Borough of Greenwich was held this month, with Lord Sugar’s right-hand man Nick Hewer giving out the accolades.

The Countdown presenter hosted the glittering ceremony at InterContinental London – The O2 on Friday 19 January. One hundred and twenty five businesses were nominated across ten categories, 50 businesses shortlisted and the winners announced to a packed out room of 350 people.

Sponsors, contributions in kind and ticket sales fully funded the awards ceremony and £1,200 was raised for the Mayor’s charities – the Garrison Church of St George and Wide Horizons – through a raffle, with £5 from the sale of each ticket being divided between the two.

The Royal Borough of Greenwich teamed up with South East London Chamber of Commerce and had Lovell as headline sponsors.

Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich Councillor Denise Hyland said: “We are proud to be home to over 11,000 businesses and the awards were a fitting celebration of this and build on existing support which the Council provides to businesses of all shapes and sizes. I’m already looking forward to next year’s event which will be even bigger and better!”
The awards have inspired regeneration company U+I to set up a junior Entrepreneur Programme in some of the borough’s schools, with them already signing up a headline sponsor for next year.

Catch this week’s Weekender for a photo special from the business awards.

The winners were:
Business Start Up award
(sponsored by Grant Saw Solicitors)
– J7 Security Limited
J7 Security, who have only been in business for just sixteen months, employ over 150 full time staff.
(sponsored by NEC)
– Inside Out Contracts
Specialists in commercial furniture since 1999, Inside Out Contracts have worked with clients ranging from McDonald’s to The Shard and the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Young Entrepreneur
(sponsored by McDonald’s)
– Archery Fit
Regarded as the best indoor archery club in London, providing professional services in stylish and funky premises, they cater for people of various ages and abilities, from complete beginners to experienced archers.
(sponsored by IKEA)
– Redurchin
An organic fashion brand for children up to 12 years, all of their products are 100% organic, supersoft cotton and their fun reusable packaging makes them perfect as gifts. Everything is made to the Global Organic Textile Standard, which means high environmental and social standards.
Tourism & Culture
(sponsored by MBNA Thames Clippers)
– Old Royal Naval College
The Old Royal Naval College is an extraordinary cultural destination on the banks of the River Thames in Greenwich. They were praised not just as a just a major heritage attraction with a rich history, but for their vibrant programme of cultural experiences.
Independent Retailer
(sponsored by Handelsbanken)
– Ottie and the Bea
Established in 2010 by owner Julia and named after her two daughters, as well as a curated selection of toys, books and gifts, the shop itself hosts a variety of events from regular book clubs to illustrator/author workshops.
Digital Leadership
(sponsored by Russell King Ass)
– Bridge Support
Bridge provides a clear pathway for people with mental health problems living in the borough to lead a more fulfilling role within their community. This includes visits to clients’ homes, medium support in their range of housing options, as well as forensic mental health support.
The Recovery College Greenwich has supported over 1,000 students in educational development and building resilience.
Food and Hospitality
(sponsored by Drury Tea & Coffee Co)
– Feast
A local catering firm for weddings, large corporate events and private clients, established in 2008. Feast’s ethos is to bring the freshest, most seasonal food to their clients along with fabulous service.
Social Enterprise
(sponsored by London City Airport)
– First Step Trust
Established in 1994 to create work experience and salaried employment for people excluded from mainstream employment.
The target group is people with mental health problems, learning disabilities, repeat offenders, people with personality disorders or substance misuse recovery problems.
Employer of the Year
(sponsored by London South East Colleges)
– MJ Rooney Construction
M J Rooney is a specialist civil engineering contractor operating across London and the South-East basement construction sector. Family run, it recently celebrated its 30th anniversary year!

For more information about the awards and the judging process, visit: