The winners of this year’s Retail Jeweller Inspiring Independents awards were announced yesterday (October 17) following a lunchtime awards ceremony held at the Riverbank Park Plaza in London.
Northern-based multi store independent Hugh Rice, walked away with the afternoon’s top accolade being crowned the best independent jeweller in North region of the UK as well as taking the afternoon’s main award for overall Inspiring Independent 2019.
This is the second consecutive year that Hugh Rice, which has stores in Hull, Harrogate and Beverley, has taken the top spot in the list of the UK’s 100 Inspiring Independent jewellery and watch retailers.
Other regional winners from the day, which also saw the top 100 Inspiring Independent list being unveiled, include:
- · Jack Murphy Jewellers – Scotland & Ireland
- · Hugh Rice – The North
- · Lumbers – The Midlands
- · EC One – The South East
- · Drakes – The South West & Wales
In addition to those in the Top 100 list, for the first time this year, Inspiring Independents also gave out awards in five separate enterable categories aimed purely at independent businesses or those who work with them.
The winners in these categories were:
- · Best Customer Experience – David Mellor Jewellers
- · Best Use of Visual Merchandising and Store Design – Harriet Kelsall Bespoke Jewellery
- · Independent Marketing Campaign of the Year – Daniella Draper
- · Best New Independent Retailer – MD Jewellers
- · Supplier of the Year to the Independent Jewellery/Watch Sector – Hockley Mint
These five new categories were open for entries and once the shortlisted was decided were subject to the same rigorous judging process used for the UK Jewellery Awards.
The Inspiring Independents Awards lunch followed a morning conference which was open to all event attendees and featured a variety of speakers from the world of fashion, design, business coaching, branding and customer service who addressed delegates on topics including new business opportunities, brand building and customer interaction.
Commenting on the event, Retail Jeweller editor Ruth Faulkner, said: “This year’s revamped Inspiring Independents event has proved a hit with attendees. The morning conference provided an additional reason to attend the day and certainly gave our guests a lot to think about while the afternoon proved to be a wonderful celebration of the independent jewellery sector. Congratulations to all of our finalists and winners and we look forward to building on the event for next year.”
More from the event, including images from the day, will be available in your next issue of Retail Jeweller, out on November 22.