New Forest firms celebrate their ‘brilliance’ at awards

new forest brilliance awards
Back (L-R): Tim Wookey (Amamus Ltd); Richard Hull (Giftpro); Michael Clitheroe (Balmer Lawn Hotel); Jeremy Whitworth (Montagu Arms Hotel) Chris Abell-Parker (Clearview Aerials). Front (L-R): Domine Nowell (Lighthouse Marketing/Dogstival) Debbie Hulme (The New Home of Interiors); Debbie Mulkern (New Forest Aromatics); Adie Callaghan (The New Forest Hamper Company); Clare Johnson (The Gourmet Grocer)

MORE than 20 New Forest firms celebrated their success at the 14th annual New Forest Brilliance in Business Awards.


Held at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, the awards attracted a record number of entries and saw Balmer Lawn Hotel walk away with New Forest Business of the Year gong.

Matthew Lawson, chairman of the New Forest Business Partnership, which runs the awards, said: “This very special event, at an exciting new venue, is all about celebrating the stories and successes of the 9,000 businesses in the New Forest,” he said

“With a record number of entries this year, I congratulate everyone who was nominated and shortlisted and especially our winners, together with those that help them start, run, grow and succeed. This evening, we celebrate together and we will all be inspired, encouraged and informed by the successes of our impressive finalists.”

Business of the Year
Balmer Lawn Hotel celebrate winning the Business of the Year award

Michael Clitheroe, general manager of the Balmer Lawn Hotel, which also won the Training and Development category, said: “The hotel has undergone a huge transformation over the last five years both as a local and regional business and fantastic industry leading employer.

“I’m very proud to receive this award in recognition of an incredible team’s achievement.”

Matt Callaghan, economic development manager at New Forest District Council, said the awards demonstrated that there was “so much to celebrate and be positive about” doing business in the New Forest.

“We have seen the district is home to businesses and individuals leading the way nationally and internationally in their individual fields,” he added.


  • The ExxonMobil Award for Innovation: Gift Pro
  • The Totton College Award for Training & Development: Balmer Lawn Hotel
  • The 49 Award for Entrepreneurship: Tim Wookey (Amamus Ltd)
  • The New Forest Marque Award for Food and Drink: The New Forest Hamper Company
  • The New Forest National Park Authority Award for Contribution to the National Park: New Forest Aromatics
  • The New Forest District Council Award for Outstanding Customer Care: Clearview Aerials
  • The New Forest Enterprise Centre Award for Best New Business: Home of Interiors
  • The Eric Robinson Award for Young Person in Business: Jeremy Whitworth (Montagu Arms Hotel)
  • The Hampshire County Council Award for Contribution to the New Forest Community: Gourmet Grocer
  • The Go New Forest Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Visitor Economy: Lighthouse Marketing
  • The NFBP Business of the Year Sponsored by Solent Local Enterprise Partnership: Balmer Lawn Hotel