LOCAL businesses attended the launch of the 2024 Ilkley Business Awards last Wednesday at The Craiglands Hotel where this year’s categories were announced.

Alongside the regular categories, some amendments have been made which the committee think better reflect the business sectors in the town.

David Waterhouse, of White Top Productions said: “The Best Side Hustle award is a new exciting category and is open to any business which is operated outside, or in addition to the owner’s main employment. So many people have started a 'side hustle business' since lock down, we thought it would be a great opportunity for people to be recognised for this.”

The Award Categories are:

1. B2B Business of The Year

2. Best Boss of The Year

3. Established Business of The Year

4. Food & Drink Business of The Year

5. Hair & Beauty Business of The Year

6. Health & Wellness Business of The Year

7. Leisure, Entertainment & Tourism Business of The Year

8. New Business of The Year

9. Professional Services Business of The Year

10. Retail Business of The Year

11. Rising Star of The Year

12. Side Hustle Business of The Year

To qualify businesses must be registered in the LS29 Ilkley area which also includes; Burley-in-Wharfedale, Addingham and Menston.

Entries can be made by either completing a form which can be downloaded from the website or by voice or video recording and emailed to entries@ilkleybusinessawards.co.uk.

Further details are on the website www.ilkleybusinessawards.co.uk and entries close at midnight on Friday, December 1st.

The launch evening was also a success in terms of businesses signing up for sponsorship with only two categories still available for sponsorship. If anyone is interested in sponsoring the Best Boss or the Side Hustle Business of the Year Award, or is interested in any of the other sponsorship opportunities please contact the committee by email: hello@ilkleybusinessawards.co.uk

Committee member Jos Mountcastle from JCM Website Design said: “The category sponsorship this year is just £495 which is very competitive compared to many awards and there are other various event sponsorship options also available including the opportunity for businesses to have their logo displayed on the evening on the large screen throughout the dinner for £95."

Julia Forrester, committee member from TaxAssist Accountants added: “As well as allowing us to put on a fabulous event, this also gives us the opportunity to promote even more LS29 businesses which is what this is all about.”

The current list of local businesses who are supporting the awards includes Bathe of Wharfedale, Brooke Financial, Clip n Climb Ilkley, Craiglands Hotel, Elite Accountancy Ltd, Event Music Company, Home Instead Ilkley, Ideal Extraction Ltd, Keybury Fire and Security, LCF Law, LFW Podiatry, Rombalds Radio, TaxAssist Accountants, Tennant & Darragh Jewellery Workshop, The Ilkley Shoe Company, White Top Productions as well as Bradford Council and joint headline sponsors, the Ilkley Business Forum and Ilkley BID.

Ilkley Gazette: Category sponsor Rachel Spencer-Robb, Head of Family Law, LCF Law, Ilkley and winner Mark Gregory, Mark Your Occasion, winner of the 2023 Professional Services Business of the Year AwardCategory sponsor Rachel Spencer-Robb, Head of Family Law, LCF Law, Ilkley and winner Mark Gregory, Mark Your Occasion, winner of the 2023 Professional Services Business of the Year Award (Image: IBA)

Mark Gregory from Mark Your Occasion, winner of the 2023 Professional Services Award said: “I didn't think much of it when I initially applied for last year's Ilkley Business Awards. I submitted the application and didn't think anything else of it. Then I found out I was a finalist, and it was all rather exciting. On the night, I was so impressed by the high quality of every aspect of the event: the live music, the photo booth, the food, and even the awards themselves – a beautiful glass trophy which now has pride of place on my mantelpiece! I was so impressed and appreciative that I wanted to give back a little, so I'll be there on the night doing some live music! I can't wait!”

Tickets for the Awards dinner on Friday, March 1st 2024 are now on sale via the website priced at £55 each – www.ilkleybusinessawards.co.uk