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Gullands hosts second High Street Heroes Awards

We were delighted to once again host the High Street Heroes Awards at Maidstone United Football Club on Thursday 24 November to say a great big thank you to the business owners and their employees who have provided excellent customer service this year.

Twenty four businesses were nominated by the public in the categories of retail, hospitality and ‘other’ and many received multiple nominations.

Paul Mannering, Business Manager at Gullands hosted the awards which were attended by around 60 people and comments: “It was fantastic to be able to bring together many businesses owners and their employees for the opportunity to network and to say thank you to them for their excellent customer service. We host the Gullands High Street Heroes Awards because we think it’s important to support all our fellow high street businesses in the town and to encourage people to use them and to also say thank you to them for the excellent customer service they provide.”

“What is great about holding these awards is that we don’t know who is going to be nominated, that’s up to the public, but at some point, in the last 12 months, all those businesses will have all done something which has made someone want to say thank you to them. “

The award nominations were judged by a team from Gullands and the One Maidstone Bid Team and no one went away empty handed, as there were winners for each category and then everyone else nominated received a runner-up certificate.

Retail winner - Mr T’s Jewellers

Retail employee winner - Lisa Townend from Mr T’s Jewellers

Retail runners-up

  • Gem Antique Jewellers
  • Arun Enterprises
  • Semma 4
  • Salamander

Nominations for our winners included:

“I have been a customer of Mr Ts for over 20 years I remember when Tony opened the shop, it was a great addition to the town. Over the years it has kept its reputation and the lovely Lisa has taken over the reins and is the jolliest, bubbliest lady. This shop has always had the customers’ best interests at heart and if a repair can't be carried out at the store, they will recommend a respected repair shop to go to. My children are now customers of Mr Ts. Such a lovely family run business.”

Hospitality award winner - Craft Brewed

Hospitality runners-up

  • The Rifle Volunteers
  • Frederic’s Café Bistro
  • Café Beck
  • Matestone
  • Angel’s Café
  • Funky Feast
  • The Old Boat Café
  • Pudding’s Coffee Shop

Nominations for our winner included:

“They have been the most amazing Cafe/Bar. Really really welcoming and feels like one big family. Always have new beers and food to try and really cater to your preference. For a new business it feels like it's been part of Maidstone forever and it's a massive breath of fresh air for the town.”

Hospitality employee winner – Debbie at Angel’s Café

“I discovered this hidden gem earlier this year and could not believe the quality of the food served for such a small amount of money. Their afternoon tea beats any previous eateries I've tried before. Debbie and her team work hard, long hours, even going to London markets in the early hours to source the freshest ingredients for their customers. They also cater for outside events at very good prices. This is a charity cafe and beats many of the profit-making ones elsewhere. They deserve some recognition; I'd love to see them gain some.”

Other business winners: Maidstone Mancave

Other runners-up:

  • Wish Hairdressing
  • Keller News
  • Spirits Beauty
  • One Maidstone Bid Team
  • Stainless Steve’s
  • Urban Blue Bus
  • Rush Hairdressing

Nominations for our winner included:

“The staff are always accommodating. And for someone who has been very weary of trying a new barber since COVID come upon us. Every time the barbers have been extremely welcoming. All are so professional and skilled. Even when it's extremely busy, which every business strives for, they take it in their stride. ManCave is a true gem in Maidstone Town Centre.”

Other employee award – The Team at Urban Blue Bus

“Urban Blue Bus are street angels, always there to offer emergency help for our young and old on the streets of Maidstone at night. These people give up their weekends to volunteer and are true street angels offering first aid and help. Thank you for helping people who need it until the small hours on our streets and for helping to keep our citizens safe.”