Businesses across Southwark have been celebrated with the announcement of the Southwark Business Resilience Awards winners.
8,436 votes cast decided the winners amongst 52 finalists across nine categories, with beauty and fitness clinic Bodytonic Clinic in Canada Water clinching the top spot of Business of the year.
The awards, arranged in association with London South Bank University, were presented by TV host Fayon Dixon in an online ceremony that reached more than 200 people.
Company director of Bodytonic Clinic, James Gill, said on the night: “I am so proud, the team will be ecstatic when I tell them. I won Entrepreneur of the year a few years back, but for me it has always been about the team.
“I had quite a difficult start in my career working for other people and so when we started Bodytonic Clinic I wanted it be a business which invested in people and their careers, allowing them to grow, develop and gain experience – and have fun.
“It has been fantastic to see the good in so many businesses. COVID has been tough for everyone but it has been inspiring the way in which businesses have supported each other and residents.”
Another business celebrated for its reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic was UK Homes 4 Heroes, which nabbed the Local Lockdown Hero award.
UK Homes 4 Heroes, founded in 2010, helps to ensure that ex-service personnel enjoy clean living environments and a place where they can feel at home.
They help former soldiers find a permanent home through private and social housing, and often assist with a grant.
“I was absolutely lost for words,” said Michelle Thorpe who co-runs the charity.
“We really worked hard is the thing, added co-runner Jimmy Jukes. “We were doing 7 days a week, feeding hundreds of people.
“We were doing it when others closed their gates”
There are more than 4,500 ex-service members of the British Armed Forces which are homeless throughout the UK, a number which the charity expects to rise in the future.
Local Lockdown Hero was sponsored by Elephant and Castle Town Centre, whose team said: “Our winner UK Homes 4 Heroes have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic supporting UK Homes 4 Heroes local ex-service personnel to find permanent homes through private and social housing.
“Alongside this, their extensive outreach work has fed over 250 homeless people every week during the pandemic, with the team getting up at the crack of dawn to collect and deliver food to those who need it most.
“At a time when so many people have been struggling, UK Homes 4 Heroes have stepped up for Southwark and helped the Southwark community through this difficult time.
“We are so proud to be sponsoring this award, which is a very small way for us to say a very big thank you to all the local heroes who have helped our communities throughout the last 18 months.” The charity is currently running a fundraiser on JustGiving – search UK Homes 4 Heroes to find it.
Peckham-based theatre studio, Theatre Peckham, achieved the COVID-19 Business Commitment to Education, Training and Skills Award.
The award was sponsored by Art Invest Real Estate. Ali Abbas, Managing Director Head of UK for the company, said: “The Award for COVID-19 Business Commitment to Education, Training and Skills is a genuine testament to those local industry leaders that are placing opportunity and ambition at the forefront of their response to these unprecedented times.”
The awards are managed on behalf of Southwark Chamber of Commerce and Southwark Council, and the programme’s sponsors include Art-Invest Real Estate Management UK Ltd, Berkeley Homes (Capital) plc, British Land, Hollybrook Homes, Elephant & Castle Town Centre, Landsec, Lendlease, with the Southwark News and Southwark Stands Together as supporters.
The full awards list is below:
BUSINESS OF THE YEAR
Winner: Bodytonic Clinic
BUSINESS PIVOT AWARD
Winner: Bodytonic Clinic
Highly Commended: The Brunel Museum
Commended: The Pizza Room
COMMUNITY COLLABORATION IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19
Sponsored by Berkeley Homes (Capital) plc
Winner: Ballers Football Academy
Highly Commended: Oxo Tower Restaurant, Bar and Brasserie
Commended: Southwark Young Advisors
COVID-19 BUSINESS RESILIENCE AWARD
Sponsored by Lendlease
Winner: SE22 Piano School
Highly Commended: Dr.Boo
Commended: Castro’s Barbershop
COVID-19 BUSINESS COMMITMENT TO EDUCATION, TRAINING & SKILLS
Sponsored by Art Invest Real Estate
Winner: Theatre Peckham
Highly Commended: Bizzie Bodies
Commended: Southwark Construction Skills Centre
Winner: BB Pads
Highly Commended: Sollip
Commended: Barefoot Joe’s
LOCAL LOCKDOWN HERO
Sponsored by Elephant & Castle Town Centre
Winner: UK Homes 4 Heroes
Highly Commended: Ballers Football Academy
OUTSTANDING TEAM AWARD
Sponsored by Hollybrook
Winner: Bodytonic Clinic
Highly Commended: Adroit Accountax
Commended: CareTrade Charitable Trust
SUSTAINABLE GREEN INVESTMENT AWARD
Sponsored by Landsec
Winner: Plastic Free Peckham
Highly Commended: The Scissors of Oz
YOUNG PERSONS CONTRIBUTION
Sponsored by British Land
Winner: Sameer, Adroit Accountax
Highly Commended: Louis, Mack Metal
Commended: Lucy, Interact