Lincolnshire egg producers LJ Fairburn & Son were crowned Family Business of the Year at the sixth Midlands Family Business Awards, held at Leicester’s Athena on 12 November 2015.
Alford-based LJ Fairburn was announced winner of the headline Award at the prestigious black tie Midlands Family Business Awards Ceremony and Dinner at Leicester’s Athena in front of 300 guests from the Awards’ 44 finalists, independent judges and sponsors, including their organiser and headline sponsor, The Wilson Organisation.
Today led by the third generation of the Fairburn family, the business started producing eggs in Alford, Lincolnshire in 1951. It has significantly expanded and transformed to become one of the largest independent egg producers and packers in the UK, delivering more than 13 million British lion approved eggs every week, with over 180 employees and an annual turnover in excess of £50 million.
Now in their sixth year, the Awards are run by third generation family business The Wilson Organisation, and are the Midlands’ only independent, not-for-profit initiative to recognise and celebrate the work, achievements, innovation, operations, growth and performance of family businesses.
Judging the headline category this year were Mark Samworth of Samworth Brothers, Annabel Prow of Wilsons, Chris Romans of PwC and Kurt Jacobs of Insider.
The judges commented: “Fairburn demonstrates all that is great about family businesses – ambition, growth, drive and inspiration. Alongside, the family and the business has maintained the values at the heart of a family firm, operating with loyalty and integrity at every level. They are highly worthy winners of the Midlands Family Business of the Year title, in what was a hotly contested final with incredible finalists once again this year.”
Highly Commended by the judges in the category were Children 1st Day Nurseries of Nottingham, and Derbyshire’s Glossop Cartons. Finalists were A1 Flue Systems, Bower Electricals and Roadlink International.
Winner of the category for family businesses with annual turnover of less than £5 million – the Best Small Family Business – was Derbyshire’s Rock Fall UK, manufacturer of safety footwear
widely used worldwide on offshore oil rigs, in cold stores, and the utility and electronics industries. Highly Commended were Churchfields Farmhouse Ice Cream of Droitwich, Worcestershire, and pie manufacturer Brockleby’s of Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire.
Sponsors of the Awards this year are Affinity Asset Finance Limited, Barclays, Bedrock, Family Business Futures, PCMS Group, PwC, RSA, Royal London, and Yu Energy.
V Formation’s Hilary Campton is the Midlands Family Business Awards’ Creative Director.
The full line-up of Winners and Highly Commended in the ten categories for 2015 are:
Midlands Family Business of the Year
- Winner – LJ Fairburn & Son (Alford, Lincolnshire)
- Highly Commended – Children 1st Day Nurseries (Nottingham)
- Highly Commended – Glossop Cartons (Glossop, Derbyshire)
Best Small Family Business
- Winner – Rock Fall UK (Alfreton, Derbyshire)
- Highly Commended – Brockleby’s (Melton Mowbray)
- Highly Commended – Churchfields Farmhouse Ice Cream (Droitwich, Worcestershire)
- Winner – Crofts & Assinder (Birmingham)
- Highly Commended – A.R.T Foods (Shrewsbury, Shropshire)
- Highly Commended – R H Smith & Sons (Smiffys) (Gainsborough, Lincolnshire)
- Winner – Rutland Cycling (Manton, Rutland)
- Highly Commended – Broad Street DIY (Bromsgrove)
- Highly Commended – Carvers (Wolverhampton)
- Winner – Shredall (Nottingham)
- Highly Commended – Corporate Solutions (Logistics) (Solihull)
- Highly Commended – Mereway Kitchens (Tyseley, Birmingham)
Employer of the Year
- Winner – ISO Quality Services (Worcester)
- Highly Commended – Hogarths Hotel (Solihull)
- Highly Commended – Inside Out Group (Nottingham)
Fastest Growing Family Business
- Winner – Country Court Care (Werrington, Peterborough)
- Highly Commended – Chasetown Civil Engineering (Burntwood, Staffordshire)
- Highly Commended – LJ Fairburn & Son (Alford, Lincolnshire)
- Winner – Glossop Cartons (Glossop, Derbyshire)
- Highly Commended – A1 Flue Systems (Nottingham)
- Highly Commended – Penny Hydraulics (Clowne, Derbyshire)
Director of the Year (under 40)
- Winner – Ian Fisher, Bonnington Plastics (Nottingham)
- Highly Commended – Phillip Kalli, Ideal Manufacturing (Finedon, Northamptonshire)
- Highly Commended – Sally Middlemiss, Rutland Cycling (Manton, Rutland)
- Winner – Chapmans Electrical (Cradley Heath)
- Highly Commended – Carvers (Wolverhampton)
- Highly Commended – Midland Conference Services (Nottingham)
For the complete list of finalists and profiles of the judges for 2015, visit: www.familybusinessawards.co.uk. Since their launch in 2010, the Awards have raised in the region of £20,000 for charities supporting young people and enterprise.