There’s an awards event just around the corner which we at are super excited about firstly, because it has a very unique format but also because it’s all about one of our favourite topics – Innovation!
A few weeks ago we had the lovely Angela Padfield from Reach PLC come to chat with us at The Badass Bistro (our current vlog venue, courtesy of Pattersons Commercial Law). The name ‘Reach PLC’ may sound familiar to many of you out there and so it should; they have a total of 50 news websites nationwide including the Mirror, Express, Star etc. and also Leicestershire Live. Across the group their sites ‘reach’ 87% of adults every month!!
Whilst we could probably have spent an hour or two talking about any of the 100’s of awards events Reach hold every year – including the highly emotional Pride of Britain Awards – Angela specifically wanted to tell us all about the Innovation Awards.
These awards were launched in 2018 and saw their first presentation evening in April 2019. Angela’s enthusiasm for the event was nothing less than contagious and when she shared the details we understood exactly why. Organised in conjunction with De Montford University, this showcase for the region’s innovative ideas is key to putting Leicestershire well and truly on the map in terms of investment, employment and many other things; but even more the event itself is something very special…
As well as having all finalists exhibiting their innovations on the night, it also involves each in turn taking two minutes on the Soapbox to talk through the ideas which formed the basis of their entries whilst guests enjoy champagne and canapes. Finally, there’s a theatre-style presentation ceremony with an inspiring keynote speaker. With all of this, and an absolutely amazing group of diverse and interesting individuals in the room, it comes as no surprise that Angela rates this as her favourite awards event of all.
This year the Innovation Awards are set to be even bigger than before. Reach, plus their headline sponsors – De Montford University, Leicester University and Morningside Pharmaceuticals – will be welcoming more finalists, more guests and there’ll be even more categories than before.
The wide range of categories means there really is something to suit everyone and, in some cases, the talent of entrants may crossover a number of categories. With guidance from Reach on this, it’s possible, for example, to see someone enter ‘Innovation in Design’ and ‘Innovation in Technology’ or even ‘Young Innovator’ – multiple bites at the cherry if you will. The other major benefit of being part of this Reach event of course is that the potential for exposure is HUGE. With their multi media empire and the massive audience it offers, the opportunity for raising profile is enormous.
The slightly bad news is that nominations for this year’s awards close on 15th January so there’s just a week to go if you don’t want to wait until 2021 to be one of the lucky (and very talented) finalists. Whilst deadline extensions are available for many awards, don’t rely upon that for this one though. The deadline date of the 15th is FINAL – after all, there’s so much to do between that and the ceremony itself on the 27th February.
Even if you decide to hold off until 2021 to have your own innovation showcased at these awards, we thoroughly recommend that you take yourself along to this year’s event at the Morningside Arena. As well as a jolly good night out you will see exactly why we think this is set to be a major feature in the awards calendar for many and will be the springboard for many Leicestershire innovators who will undoubtedly go on to even bigger things.
If you would like to see, first hand, the infectious enthusiasm which Angela has for these awards and hear some of the fabulous things she told us about the idea behind them, then view the vlog at https://youtube.com/watch?v=SR5_qJhV8ts