Entrepreneur Awards supported by Octopus, Springboard

Congratulations to our 2021 winners, chosen by a panel of politicians and entrepreneurs, for showing ingenuity and business acumen, whilst supporting their communities throughout the pandemic.

By nominating someone for an award in 2022, you will give them a platform to help their business grow, and to inspire others.

More about our winners

Green Acres Farm Rural Enterprises CIC 

Winner name: Heather Wilson 

Working with schools to provide an alternative style of education for young people, encouraging an enterprising outlook. 

The business was set up to offer educational opportunities for young people not in full-time schooling, including running the ‘Friday Café’ for the elderly & socially isolated.  

During the pandemic, volunteers delivered meals to a local retirement home, and later people shielding across nearby rural areas.  

Looking forward, the team plans to raise money and partner with other local businesses to continue growing their Rural Craft centre.  

Flare Bright 

Winner name: Chris Daniels/Kelvin Hamilton/ Conrad Rider 

A rapidly growing aerospace company pushing the boundaries of AI technology to develop autonomous drones.

By winning new investment and contracts, Flare Bright managed to double their head count, including an apprentice from a nearby college. They also expanded to a larger centre for research and innovation despite lockdown restrictions. They are looking to capitalise on their recent InnovateUK Future Flight grants to continue growing, including taking on another apprentice.  

Update from Flare Bright since they won:

Flare Bright have gone from strength to strength after winning this award last year for their rapidly growing aerospace company, which is pushing the boundaries of AI technology to develop autonomous drones. Flare Bright have seen sustained success after winning the award and are currently one of 10 companies partaking in a global accelerator programme with Boeing.

Cooper King Distillery

Winner name: Dr Abbie Neilson and Christopher Jaume 

An independent distillery producing England’s first carbon-negative gin. Their self-built distillery is powered by 100% green energy.

When the pandemic hit, their sales plummeted, losing 75% revenue. The company were quick to switch production from alcohol to hand sanitiser in just 5 days, supplying a national retailer and donating to the local community and frontline workers. 

The team also set up at-home tasting experiences hosted by the founders, which proved to be a great success. Looking forward, they are looking to continue their work to tackle climate change. 

Prestige Furniture Art 

Winner name: Shane Jones and Dean Jones 

Handmade furniture business that uses locally sourced materials and recycled materials to ensure a low carbon footprint.

During the lockdown, Prestige Furniture took on members of their community who had lost their jobs through the pandemic, as delivery drivers. As the business grew, the company took on more local people, including finding a role in their warehouse for a local teenager during school closures.  

They also provided free furniture to a local pub and recreation ground to enable them to reopen with social distancing measures in place.  

Building a nation of entrepreneurs to fight for economic recovery