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There were accolades aplenty last weekend as intu Eldon Square celebrated the very best stores and staff from across the centre at its third annual Retailer Awards.
The dazzling ceremony, hosted by Metro Radio’s Steve and Karen, took place at Newcastle’s Boiler Shop venue which was transformed into an elaborate scene from Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, showcasing Willy Wonka themed decorations and edible centre pieces at the gala dinner.
The judges for this esteemed competition were members of the general public who voted online in their thousands in the months preceding the ceremony – nominating their favourite stores, as well as highlighting excellence in customer service.
On the night retailers from over 130 stores competed for 14 awards for retailer excellence, including the highly prized accolade of Customer Service Star of The Year. Also up for grabs were trophies for jewellery, footwear and accessories, and menswear and womenswear stores of the year.
Following the opening of intu Eldon Square’s exciting new dining quarter last autumn a stand-alone category of Restaurant of the Year was introduced for 2017. The fiercely contended award went to George’s Great British Kitchen, who fought off stiff competition from Chaophraya, The Alchemist and Giraffe World Kitchen.
Managing Director Andrew Constantinou said:
“We are extremely proud and humbled that our customers have taken their time to vote for us, this is testament to the hard work our team put in to ensuring the restaurant delivers fantastic food , drinks and service, and we’d like to thank everyone who voted.”
Newcomer of the Year award went to another new arrival to Grey’s Quarter, The Alchemist.
General Manager Peter Davis commented:
“The Alchemist team is elated to win ‘Newcomer of the Year’ and would like to thank everyone who put us forward for consideration. The last 7 months have flown by in a blaze of dry ice and we are proud to be part of the intu family – here’s to next year!”
Lush picked up the award for Customer Service Star of the Year, whilst Specialist Store of the Year went to Disney Store and Boots scooped the award for Health and Beauty Retailer of the Year for the third year running.
New Look reclaimed their title of Womenswear Store of the Year and Waitrose scooped the Community Prize award.
Waitrose Manager Rob Brewis had a double reason to celebrate.
“I’m obviously thrilled to bits that we won the Community Star award” said Rob, “which is a great tribute to the branch as we donate £1,000 a month to 3 local charities or causes through our community matters scheme, as well as getting involved as much as we can with local academies and colleges to support young people into work, and supporting local food banks. This is a night I won’t ever forget, but not only for achieving this accolade – I actually had to miss the awards as my girlfriend went into labour and presented me with a beautiful daughter the next day so it’s been a superb 24 hours for both the branch and me!”
Staff at Topman and Topshop cheered on their manager Dawn Wallace who received the accolade of Store Manager of the Year as well as claiming the coveted prize for Retailer of the Year for Topman and Topshop, and Topman winning Menswear Store of the Year.
“It’s absolutely amazing to win three awards in one scoop! To do this for both brands is great for our staff and great for the store! The team have worked extremely hard all year and it’s really gratifying to get this recognition which makes us feel the best on the high street!”
Phil Steele, general manager at intu Eldon Square, added:
“The Retailer Awards are a great opportunity for us to identify, recognise and celebrate the outstanding contributions our retailers make to intu Eldon Square and the ceremony has become a real highlight of our social calendar.
“The evening always has such a positive and unifying atmosphere with retail and restaurant staff receiving high praise and constructive feedback from shoppers and warm recognition from colleagues in the industry.”
INTU ELDON SQUARE RETAILER AWARDS RESULTS:
Menswear Store of the Year: Topman
Womenswear Store of the Year New Look
Footwear and Accessories Store of the Year Office
Food on the Go Retailer of the Year Greggs
Health & Beauty Store of the Year Boots
Specialist Store of the Year Disney Store
Jewellery Store of the Year Pandora
Restaurant of the Year
George’s Great British Kitchen
Newcomer of the Year
Customer Service Star of the Year Lush
Retailer of the Year Topshop & Topman
Store Manager of the Year
Dawn Wallace, Topshop & Topman
Community Star of the Year Waitrose
Marketing Star of the Year Lush