News & Blogs

Wilsons supporting the Family Business Network conference

Wilsons supporting the Family Business Network conference

22 May 2019

The inaugural Lincolnshire Family Business Conference is to take place on Thursday 4th July at The International Bomber Command Centre in Lincoln.

We are delighted to be supporting this new conference for family businesses in Lincolnshire. Following in the wake of the established and highly successful Cumbria Family Business Conference also run by The Family Business Network, founder Sue Howorth is launching the conference in Lincolnshire for the first time, in partnership with Langleys Solicitors & Streets Accountants – sponsor of our People’s Choice Award.

With an inspirational line-up of speakers, interactive topical discussions and live interviews, the conference is designed to highlight the strengths of family businesses, look at challenges facing this important sector and to offer valuable family business insights through peer to peer learning. The conference is aimed at family business owners and leaders and those associated with the sector, that supports 12 million jobs in the UK.

Sue Howorth explained: “I’m incredibly excited about bringing the conference to Lincolnshire for the first time. I’ve been thrilled with the level of support and interest that we’ve received from both family businesses and supporting partners, which will in turn help us to continue to build the profile of The Family Business Network in the county and surrounding areas.

“The family business sector is such a vital part of the UK economy and whilst the economic and political climate present challenges ahead, the role of our Network and events like the Family Business Conference is to offer a unique environment for family businesses to hear other family business stories that we hope will inspire current and future generations, as well as the opportunity for peer to peer learning through our interactive discussions and interviews on the day.”

James Pinchbeck of Streets Accountants added“The vibrant, diverse and highly experienced line up has been chosen for the first Lincolnshire conference to help generate fresh thinking and includes Guy Schanschieff MBE, founder and Managing Director of Bambino Mio, one of the worlds most widely used reusable nappy brands, Cal Bailey of NG Bailey, the UK’s leading independent engineering and services business, Phoebe Bagnall, a next generation successor of 140 year old family business Bagnalls, and Melanie Tillet, Director of Tillets, the independent family owned ladies clothing business.

Guest speaker, Cal Bailey was the group sustainability director of engineering firm NG Bailey until choosing to take early retirement to concentrate on academic and philanthropic interests. He said, “My great desire is to see business re-infected with purpose. As a custodian of a multi-generational family business, I’m very much looking forward to being a part of The Family Business Conference and offering my perspective as part of an interactive discussion.”

Guest presenters will also join the line up of speakers on the day, including local business women Emma Brealey of the family owned Petwood Hotel – Highly Commended in our Director of the Year category in 2018, who will be putting another family business in the spotlight in a frank and honest interview.

The conference is being run in partnership with Streets Accountants and Langleys Solicitors and is supported by The Wilson Organisation (founders of the Midlands Family Business Awards) Western Pensions Solutions (part of the family owned Vestey Group), Wrapped Agency and Camilla Carlbom of Immingham based Carlbom Shipping Ltd.

Tickets for the Lincolnshire Family Business Conference on Thursday 4th July 2019 9:30am – 4pm taking place at the International Bomber Command Centre, Canwick Avenue, Lincoln LN4, 2HQ can now be booked online


News & Blogs

It’s a family affair!

It’s a family affair!

6 May 2019

Entries are now open for the 2019 Midlands Family Business Awards, with three new categories added to mark the 10th anniversary.

Organised and backed by The Wilson Organisation, the awards celebrate and recognise the success, achievements and innovations of family-run businesses and raise funds for local charities at the awards dinner.

This is the only independent and not-for-profit awards of its kind and with ten free-to-enter categories including Family Business of the Year, Fastest Growing Family Businesses, Employer of the Year, Best Small Family Business, Manufacturing Excellence, Corporate Social Responsibility and Service Excellence, there is an accolade suitable for every business.

Exciting new categories this year include – Next Generation Family Business Leader, Construction & Property Excellence and an extra special category called Rising Stars. Rising Stars celebrates newly established family businesses that have a bright future, recognising achievements to date and providing a professional support package for 2020 to assist growth.

Taking place on 7th November at the King Power Stadium in Leicester, the black-tie awards dinner attracts over 300 guests including awards finalists, independent judges and sponsors.

The judges are an independent panel, led by a family business leader, industry expert and the category sponsor, and all finalists are entered into the People’s Choice Award, voted by the public.

Our Group Managing Director oat Wilsons, Charlotte Perkins, said: “Having launched the awards back in 2010, our aim has always been to shine a light on the region’s talented and successful family businesses and to play our part in creating a community of likeminded and supportive individuals.

“The awards have grown year on year and I think that is testament to the volume and calibre of brilliant firms in our region, and the fact that family businesses embrace celebrating their own success and that of others.

“We are proud to be in our tenth year and we look forward to receiving entries and meeting other regional family businesses in November. We also have a few fun surprises for our finalists and guests to get involved with on the evening. I wish all the businesses who enter the best of luck!”

Category sponsors for 2019 include OrderWise (headline sponsor), Buckles Solicitors, PwC, Shakespeare Martineau, Streets Chartered Accountants and Ward Recycling.

David Hallam who is Managing Director at OrderWise, winners of the 2017 Midlands Family Business of the Year Award said: “Receiving recognition at the Midlands Family Business Awards, as well as sponsoring it last year and for the 10th Anniversary this year, has raised our profile regionally. As veterans of many award submissions, we can also say it is one of the more straightforward to enter thanks to their simple-to-use online entry form.”

If you’re a growing family business with a recent success story to tell, these awards provide a great platform for this to be recognised and I’d certainly recommend entry in 2019.”

Donald Ward, Commercial Manager at Ward said: “We are proud to be a sponsor of the Midlands Family Business Awards as it celebrates its 10th anniversary. We were excited to win two awards last year, which has been tremendous for our business.

“Being recognised as a fast-growing family business that has ambitious plans for the future was testament to our hard-working team. And for us, taking home the top prize, Family Business of the Year was truly special, so we encourage other family businesses to enter this year, celebrate their successes and get the recognition that their efforts deserve.”

In 2018 the awards drew over 130 entries from a range of family businesses across the Midlands. Innovation and commitment to excellence was clear across all winners, alongside strong family values.

The much-deserving Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance and The Midlands Air Ambulance are the charities that the awards will be supporting this year.

Nominations for the 2019 awards close 12th July and can be submitted via the awards website



News & Blogs

Family Business Awards’ deadline extended

Family Business Awards’ deadline extended

18 July 2018

The deadline for entries to the 2018 Midlands Family Business Awards, organised by Wilsons, has been extended by two weeks to midnight on Friday 27 July.

Entries to the Awards – the Midlands only initiative dedicated to showcasing the work and success of the region’s family businesses – are free of charge and can be made via the Awards website with ten categories to choose from, including the headline Family Business of the Year Award.

“After receiving a number of requests for more time, we have pushed back our final deadline by two weeks,” explains Charlotte Perkins (pictured) of third generation family business The Wilson Organisation, which organises the Awards, “to ensure that family run and owned businesses don’t miss the chance to showcase their work and achievements, and to give them a little more time to polish and perfect their submissions.

“The entry process is really easy – simply head to the Awards website, register and start the online submission in up to two categories. Entries can be saved and revisited at any time before making the final submission by the new deadline of midnight on Friday 27 July.

“Guidance on what the judges are looking for and the entry criteria can also be found on our website, and the Awards team are always on hand to answer any queries,” she adds, “from which category may be best, to when and where the judging days will be held.”

The full line-up of categories and their sponsors in 2018 is:

  • Family Business of the Year – sponsored by OrderWise
    • Best Small Family Business – sponsored by John Pye Auctions
    • Director of the Year – sponsored by Goldfish
    • Employer of the Year – sponsored by Buckles Solicitors
    • Fastest Growing Family Business – sponsored by PwC
    • Innovation – sponsored by Morningside Pharmaceuticals
    • Service Excellence – sponsored by Shakespeare Martineau
    • Manufacturing Excellence
    • Retail Excellence
    • Corporate Social Responsibility
    • People’s Choice Award – sponsored by Streets Chartered Accountants and decided by public vote.

Now in their ninth year, the Awards are the only initiative dedicated to celebrating and recognising the success, achievements and innovations of family run and owned businesses across the Midlands.  100 percent independent and not-for-profit, the Awards have raised over £30,000 for Midlands-based charities since their launch.

Charlotte adds: “The Awards are all about honouring the family business community across the Midlands. We are grateful for the support of all our sponsors, some of which have been with us from the start, for their incredible generosity.

“The Awards are firmly established as a highlight in the Midlands calendar and we hope that with the extra two weeks until our extended deadline, even more family businesses from across the region will take the opportunity to shout about their work and enter this year’s Awards.”

Six finalists in each category will be chosen to go forward and meet the judging panel, with informal interviews taking place from mid-September to mid-October.

Each judging panel is led by a leading family business person, supported by a sponsor representative, an industry expert and representative from the Awards team, with the results a tightly kept secret until the Awards ceremony and black-tie dinner on Thursday 22nd November 2018 at Leicester’s Athena.

For further details or help with entering the Awards, visit or contact: Ped Briggs email:  [email protected] T: 0115 942 0111.