Yorkshire Business Awards
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Design Portfolio

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On Friday 7 December, the corporate community gathered at The Queens Hotel in Leeds for the annual Yorkshire Business Awards, which was organised by Variety, the Children’s Charity. Variety provides practical, tangible help that makes an immediate difference to sick, disabled and disadvantaged children and their families across the UK, so Design Portfolio was delighted to take part in the event again this year and pledge its support. We enjoyed the afternoon with some of our northern clients, celebrating achievements and recognising success in the region.

This year Nina Hossain from ITV News was our fantastic compère, keeping the ceremony running and everyone in high spirits. The keynote speaker for the afternoon was the Rt Hon Sir John Major KG CH, who regaled us with witty stories about his time in office and additionally a historical family link to Leeds.

This year we were pleased to see one of our great northern clients, Marshalls plc, shortlisted for the Board of the Year. Unfortunately, the competition was stiff and they were pipped to the post by Bettys and Taylors of Harrogate. As for the rest of the afternoon’s awards, the winners included Debbie Bestwick, CEO and Co-Founder at Team17 (Business Leader of the Year); Sumo Digital (Best SME); and Twinkl (Standout Small Business of the Year).

The afternoon concluded with the Bobbie Caplin OBE Yorkshire Legend Award. This award is designed to recognise a unique individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the country/region in his or her area of activity. This year, there were not one but two recipients of this special accolade. The first awardee was David Blunkett – MP between 1987 and 2015 and a member of Cabinet for eight of those years – who spoke about his love for Yorkshire and specifically his beloved Sheffield Wednesday Football Club.

The second recipient was Gervase Phinn – comedian, author, poet, broadcaster, lecturer, educational guru, after-dinner speaker and “born raconteur”, as described by The Guardian. Gervase entertained us with some hilarious anecdotes of his time as a school’s inspector in the Yorkshire Dales.

Congratulations again to all the winners and a big well done to everyone who donated. In excess of £138,000 was raised this year, an increase of £27,000 from last year, which is fantastic.

As always, we look forward to next year!