Honours for business elite

JUBILANT bosses at a Hartlepool recycling firm are celebrating after becoming the town’s Business of the Year.

On a glittering night which saw the cream of the town’s industry honoured at the Hartlepool Business Awards, Tomlinson Road-based J&B Recycling took home two titles.

The 13-year-old company also won the Environment category as well as the overall crown. After collecting the two awards, managing director Vikki Jackson-Smith said: “Wow! That’s a great surprise.”

She praised the company’s workforce and said: “We could not have done this without them.”

Commercial manager Mark Penny said the double honour was proof that J&B was doing a good job for its customers. J&B recycles around 100,000 tonnes of waste each year from household, commercial, industrial and construction sources.

Eleven awards including the Business of the Year title – as well as record prize money of £12,000 – were awarded last night at the Borough Hall event which attracted more than 360 people.

They got to enjoy a three course meal as well as watching two videos featuring Hartlepool, including one which looked back on last year’s town leg of The Tall Ships Races.

Guest of honour was Sir John Hall who addressed the audience of town dignitaries and top business talent. He described Hartlepool as “a great community with a kindness and a passion”.

He said he had never visited another town with so much enterprise and praised the town’s fighting spirit plus its ability to work hard which would help it through tough times.

Sir John added: “You are one of the most entrepreneurial places and exciting places I have visited.”

Awards organiser and last night’s Master of Ceremonies, John Megson, said: “It has been a very good atmosphere and the diversity of the winners is a great reflection of the entrepeneurship in Hartlepool.”

The Hartlepool Mail will be publishing a supplement next Tuesday filled with details of every winner and the reactions of their bosses.

Make sure you order your copy.