Last month, I launched my 2022 Local Business Awards. Each year, I take nominations from across Denton and Reddish for the best local businesses. Every nominated business receives a certificate to proudly display, and on Small Business Saturday (December 3rd) I announce winners for each ward as well as an overall winner and runner-up. Businesses must be located in Denton, Dukinfield, Audenshaw, Reddish, Heaton Norris or Heaton Chapel to be eligible.
I started the Local Business Awards some years ago as a bit of fun to celebrate the burgeoning independent shops, restaurants and pubs popping up across the local area. Since then, the Business Awards have become bigger and better than I could have ever imagined.
Last year, we received 4,500 nominations, and more than 250 businesses were celebrated. As soon as I open these awards, my office is inundated with nominations. From craft shops to craft ales and top-notch cafes to accountancy firms, there’s seemingly no end to local entrepreneurial spirit.
There’s something really special about making time to recognise local businesses that are the lifeblood of our communities. During the darkest days of lockdown, when non-essential businesses were forced to close, I still remember how surreal it all felt, and how much I missed nipping into a cafe for a cup of tea or bumping into a friend out and about.
Thankfully, businesses are no longer having to contend with lockdowns, but there are still plenty of challenges for small business owners to contend with: economic instability, an ever-changing trade picture and a cost-of-living crisis to name just a few daunting hurdles. That’s why it’s more important than ever that we don’t take for granted our local businesses, and carve out time to say thanks to the ones that go above and beyond. Without them, not only would we be economically poorer as a nation, but socially poorer too.
I can’t wait for Small Business Saturday, when I get to travel the length breadth of the constituency and chat to local business owners.
They are always beyond delighted to see their hard work being recognised by the people who matter most – customers! So if you know a local business that deserves to be celebrated, visit www.andrewgwynne.co.uk/LBA to submit your nomination.