The Sun Shone Brightly At The Greats Awards 2021

The sun was shining and there were beaming smiles all round as the winners of The Greats gift retailer awards 2021 were revealed yesterday (September 23) at a lovely afternoon event, held at the historic Honourable Artillery Company in London.

Above: Some of The Greats attendees enjoying the al fresco drinks reception.
Above: Some of The Greats attendees enjoying the al fresco drinks reception.

Organised by Progressive Gifts & Home and GiftsandHome.net, The Greats event brought together the cream of gift retail, leading gift and greeting card suppliers, trade show organisers and reps and agents – with the Awards compered by stand-up comedian Stuart Goldsmith.

In her welcome speech, Sue Marks, editor of Progressive Gifts & Home and GiftsandHome.net, said: “Currently, with the UK hopefully through the worst of the pandemic, it’s finally a time to look forward, and I would like to praise the resilience, the resourcefulness and the lateral thinking of all our finalists,and our industry in general, in what has been a rollercoaster time for everyone.”

Above: Sue Marks on stage at The Greats.
Above: Sue Marks on stage at The Greats.

She continued: “Your success comes from having your finger on the pulse of what your customers want, and in being able to diversify quickly as the pandemic has demonstrated.”

The ceremony culminated with the prestigious Outstanding Achievement Award, which was awarded posthumously to Robert (Bob) Illingworth, the former chairman of Widdop & Co, in recognition of the huge contribution he made to the giftware industry. His grandson Stephen Illingworth, Widdop & Co’s creative director delivered a superb and suitably touching speech about his grandfather.

“Grandpa saw out recessions, wars, crises, the advent of the internet and he always told me that in tough times that is when our industry thrived as the creators of affordable gifts that bring happiness. If he were here today, he would be relishing the challenges we all face right now, from shipping to supply chain, Amazon selling to pricing,” said Stephen. “He would be quietly so honoured and thrilled to be acknowledged for his lifetime’s work and our whole family, especially my granny, who is here today, thank you all so much for this award and the support recently and over so many years from across the trade. Congratulations to everyone in the room today – winners and finalists- he would have been proud to be amongst you.”

Above: It was an emotional day for the Widdop team, (some of which are pictured here). In addition to the Outstanding Achievement Award being presented posthumously to Bob Illingworth, Widdop & Co won the Gold award in the Best Service to the Independent Retailer.
Above: It was an emotional day for the Widdop team, (some of which are pictured here). In addition to the Outstanding Achievement Award being presented posthumously to Bob Illingworth, Widdop & Co won the Gold award in the Best Service to the Independent Retailer.

The full list of The Greats Awards 2021 winners as well as photos of them receiving the award from the category sponsor and host Stuart Goldsmith are here in all their glory…

104. Greats Winners Header

Retail Employee of the Year 2021 (sponsored by Method UK)

Winner: Kirsty Hammond, manager, No.14 Ampthill, Ampthill

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year - Midlands and Wales (sponsored by Harrogate Christmas & Gift)

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – Midlands and Wales (sponsored by Harrogate Christmas & Gift)

Winner: Mooch Gifts & Home, Bewdley and Stourport-on-Severn

2. _DSC0528

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – Scotland (sponsored by Allsorted)

Winner: Original Artists, Gourock 

3. _DSC0533

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – North and Northern Ireland (sponsored by Joe Davies)

Winner: Robert & Ruby, Helmsley 

4._DSC0538

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – South West (sponsored by Progressive Greetings Live)

Winner: Highworth Emporium, Highworth 

5._DSC0544

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – East Anglia (sponsored by Heritage Art & Design)

Winner: Lovely Libby’s and Olive Branch, Billericay, Brentwood and Rayleigh 

6._DSC0548

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – London (inside M25) (sponsored by Gift Republic)

Winner: Jumping Bean, Beckenham and Honor Oak

7. _DSC0553

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – Home Counties, South and South East (sponsored by Wrendale Designs)

Winner: Lulu Loves Home, Stubbington 

8. _DSC0558

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – Best Newcomer Midlands, North and Scotland (sponsored by Progressive Greetings)

Winner: Keepsakes Scotland, Inverness, Loch Lomond and Pitlochry 

9._DSC0564

Independent Gift Retailer of the Year – Best Newcomer South & Wales (sponsored by Carte Blanche Greetings)

Winner: The Bean Hive, Kettering and The Bean Hive By The Sea, Falmouth

10. _DSC0569

Best Specialist Multiple Gift Retailer (sponsored by Products of Change)

Winner: Lark

11._DSC0576

Best Department Store Retailer of Gifts (sponsored by Ahleigh & Burwood)

Winner: Roys of Wroxham

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Best Non-Specialist Retailer of Gifts (sponsored by Start Licensing)

Winner: Oliver Bonas 

13._DSC0584

Best Lifestyle Or Homewares Retailer Of Gifts (sponsored by HousewaresNews.net)

Winner: Josie’s Interiors, Bideford 

14._DSC0589

Best Gift Retailer Of Jewellery & Fashion Accessories (sponsored by Life Charms)

Winner: MiMi, Hartley Wintney 

15. _DSC0598

Best Garden Centre Retailer of Gifts (sponsored by Premier Decorations)

Winner: Yarnton Home and Garden, Yarnton 

16. _DSC0602

Best Museum Or Visitor Attraction Gift Shop (sponsored by LicensingSource.net)

Winner: Milestones Living History Museum, Basingstoke 

17._DSC0608

Best In-Store Or Window Display (sponsored by Gisela Graham)

Winner: In Heaven At Home, Market Harborough 

18._DSC0615

Best Retailer Initiative (sponsored by Candlelight)

Winner: The Celtic Company, Welshpool, for its video appeal to the Welsh government 

19. _DSC0621

Best Service To The Independent Retailer (sponsored by Exposé Travel)

Bronze Award Winner 2021: Gisela Graham

20. _DSC0626

Silver Award Winner 2021: Joe Davies

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Gold Award Winner 2021: Widdop & Co.

22._DSC0637

Outstanding Achievement Award (sponsored by the Giftware Association)

Robert (Bob) Illingworth

23._DSC0652

The Greats Awards 2021 were sponsored by the following companies (in alphabetical order): Allsorted, Art & Heritage, Ashleigh & Burwood; Candlelight; Carte Blanche Greetings (CBG); Gift RepublicGiftsandHome.net; The Giftware Association; Gisela Graham; Harrogate Christmas & Gift; Joe Davieslicensingsource.net; Life Charms; Method UK; Premier Decorations; Products of Change; Progressive Gifts & Home; Progressive Greetings Live, Progressive Greetings magazine; Spring Fair and Autumn Fair and Wrendale Designs.

Top: The winners of The Greats with their ‘stand in’ glass trophies outside the HAC yesterday afternoon.

 

 

 

 

 

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