Business women danced the night away at the annual Johnston Press East Sussex Women in Business Awards.
The ladies enjoyed a three-course meal at the Cavendish Hotel with their friends, family and colleagues ahead of the awards ceremony on Friday (July 20) which recognises the best business women in our county.
Blaise Tapp, this paper’s communities content editor, took to the stage and welcomed guests at the beginning of the event.
He said, “In the space of just a few years, this event has become recognised as one of the most important in Eastbourne’s business calendar.
“Tonight we will reveal the names of those women who are at the top of their game and who have given our wonderful county its reputation as home to some of the best female-led businesses in the UK.”
He also thanked the staff at Eastbourne’s Cavendish Hotel for their hospitality.
The East Sussex Women in Business Awards headline sponsor is Hart Reade. Alexandra Funnell, from the law firm, is one of the event’s biggest supporters and a businesswoman in her own right.
The awards were presented by guest host Vicky Edwards. Her stage work includes seasons at Chichester Festival Theatre, a stint in the West End and several national tours.
She was also part of the presenting team at Spirit FM for more than ten years and has grilled the likes of Julian Clary, Sheila Hancock and Dame Ann Leslie. She is the author of several books including The Joy of Ex: Don’t Get Mad, Get Over It.
The results of the East Sussex Women in Business Awards 2018 are:
Business Woman of the Year, sponsored by Arlington Aesthetics Clinic
Highly commended: Linda Edwards, operations director at the Sussex Sign Company
Winner: Drusillas Park, mother and daughter team Christine Smith and Cassandra Poland
Innovation Award, sponsored by The Cooden Medical Group
Winner: Emma Hellier of Bexhill
New Business/Start Up of the Year Award, sponsored by Eastbourne Unlimited Chamber of Commerce
Winner: Maria Katsari of Coffee and Carrot
Small Business Award, sponsored by Chatfields Independent Jewellers
Winner: Kay Smith and Katy Tsigardes of MasonBryant
Medium Business of the Year, sponsored by Business East Sussex
Highly commended: Sara Hawes of Hawes Building Limited
Winner: Melanie Richardson of Swindells Accounting
Large Business, sponsored by pier owner Abin Gulzar
Winner: Fiona White of Sunrise of Eastbourne
Rising Star of the Year, sponsored by Eastbourne Arndale Centre
Winner; Claire Reed of Beauty Ninjas
Woman In Education, sponsored by Sussex Downs College
Winner: Chanctonbury Healthcare
Woman In Uniform, sponsored by First Choice Dental Surgery
Winner: Joanne Chadwick Bell on behalf of all the uniformed staff at the East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust
Woman In Arts/Music/Dance or Media, sponsored by Embassy Leisure Corporation Limited
Winner: Jeannine Williamson
Employer of the Year, sponsored by Hailsham Roadways
Winner: Wilson and Hancock Ltd, the independent opticians
Contribution To The Community Award, sponsored by Smith and Ouzman
Winner; Jane Lowe of Ivy House Day Centre
Mentor of The Year, sponsored by Etc Magazine
Winner: Ann Gillard of The People Matter Trust
Woman of Courage Award, sponsored by Peterhouse
Winner: Zara O’Brien and Amelia Trevorrow
Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored by W Bruford
Winner: Jill Parker
Readers’ Choice, sponsored by Hunt Frame
Winner: Joanna Whippy
Overall Business or Business Woman of 2018, sponsored by Hart Reade
Winner: Christine Smith and Cassandra Poland of Drusillas Park
Photos by Mark Dimmock