Ain’t no party like a Muddy winners’ party
The best local businesses came, saw and partied at The Post Barn in Donnington last week. Wanna see the mischief that ensued?
After a year off for bad behaviour (urgh let’s not mention the C word), the Muddy Awards 2021 were back and the winners’ drinks party was nothing short FAB-U-LOUS. The awards are such a big deal these days over 75,000 businesses entered and 850,000 votes counted across the Muddy counties. The interest in Berkshire was unprecedented. Bonkers! So we decided to think big when it came to our 2021 winners’ bash.
For first time ever we had a local sponsor – Berkshire Botanical. A wonderful local brand that lives and breathes our Muddy mantra #inlovewithlocal. They distill in Yattendon and use botanicals inspired by the flora and fauna found right on their doorstep and are busy spreading the gin love all over the world. All the winners’ clinked out of the door with a couple of bottles in the goody bags too which became a bit of a morning after the night before self care package with Pink Stiletto biscuit from Maidenhead-based The Funky Cookie Company and a pink clay mask from skincare brand NOOD Skin (check out their new shop in Caversham). All kindly donated to the winners, so a huge thank you.
This year we whisked our winners off to the The Post Barn in Donnington – the most incredible new wedding venue with its cathedral-like oak beam roof, stunning Crittal doors and an attention to detail that simply took our breath away. To say it was getting rave reviews all night is an understatement.
Frankly, the whole thing was a blast from beginning to end. Getting to meet inspirational, creative people – after all finding brilliant local businesses is right at the heart of Muddy and we really do love it. And the giant lights and flower wall provided by Louise our Party Queen from Blooming Fabulous Flowers went down a storm.
We all enjoyed a glass (or three) of something chilled and bubbly, thanks to the wonderful Stanlake Park Wine Estate – winner of this year’s Local Producer award. Sadly Natalia and Nico couldn’t make the party. So they they generously sent their locally produced bubbles to celebrate Berkshire’s best in show.
Running a business requires great effort and to make it a successful one that brightens up our daily lives, adding to our community, is no mean feat (particularly after the last 18 months). So it’s an honour to be able to celebrate this on behalf of hard-working business owners across Berkshire.
The warmth in the room really hit home to me how much talent, character and good-feeling there is here in Berks. I’m not sure my blithering speech did you justice, but the sentiment is definitely there!
And these winning businesses should feel proud. ALL the Finalists were a hugely talented bunch and the battle to reach the finals was insane. So to then win is a massive achievement, with thousands and thousands of businesses nominated from all corners of the county, from teeny-tiny villages, to our bigger towns.
One final thank you to our awesome photographer Charlie Brown for capturing the Muddy winners’ party so well. Charlie has many talents but I particularly love how she shakes off the stiffness to capture cool creative portraits and brand personality pics. Take 1 min out to look at her Instagram page and you’ll see what I mean. Also a big thank you to my glam squad – aka Jo at Gilded Hair, a previous Muddy Award winning hair salon, who sorted out my Waynetta Slob barnet.
Much fun was had by all, new connections forged and successes toasted… toasted quite extensively by some people. The morning after, Muddy Berks HQ was powered solely by coffee and paracetamol (and soundtracked by gentle weeping).
But there would be no party with no awards, and no awards with no readers to vote for their most loved indie businesses, so it’s a big heartfelt THANK YOU from me to you for taking the time to give your local favourites a pat on the back and showing your support for the Muddies. See you in 2022 but until then, give this lovely lot a virtual round of applause to, check out the winners’ gallery of pics, (and then go pay them all a visit) …
Until next year. Mwah.
THE MUDDY STILETTOS AWARDS WINNERS 2021
ART GALLERY: The Base (Greenham)
BAR: The Globe (Newbury)
BEAUTY SALON: The Colour Palette Salon (Crowthorne)
BOOKSHOP: Fourbears Books (Caversham)
BOUTIQUE STAY: Bray Cottages (Bray)
BRIDAL BOUTIQUE: Miss Bridal Gowns (Hungerford)
CHILDREN’S BUSINESS: Popsy & Mama (Thatcham)
DAY SPA: Thames Lido (Reading)
DESTINATION PUB: The Hind’s Head (Bray)
FAMILY ATTRACTION: Wellington Country Park (Riseley)
FARM SHOP/DELI: The Grumpy Goat (Reading)
FITNESS INSTRUCTOR: Fulbrook Fitness (Reading)
FLORIST: Sonning Flowers (Newbury)
GARDEN DESIGN: Creative Landscape (Twyford)
GIFT SHOP: The Corner Shop (Woolhampton)
HAIR SALON: Rebecca Day Hair (Thatcham)
INTERIORS STORE: Victoria & Co (Twyford)
JEWELLERY STORE: Charlotte Jones Jewellery (Reading)
LOCAL PRODUCER (FOOD/DRINK): Stanlake Park Wine Estate (Twyford)
NEW COVID BUSINESS: The Pizza Pilot (Newbury)
PHOTOGRAPHER: Megan Daisy Photography (Reading)
RESTAURANT: Caldesi in Campagna (Bray)
THEATRE/ARTS VENUE: South Hill Park Art Centre (Bracknell)
WEDDING VENUE: Wasing Park (Aldermaston)
WOMEN’S FASHION STORE: Amelia Rose Accessories (Newbury)
YOGA/PILATES INSTRUCTOR: Re-Flection Wellness (Crowthorne)