Muddy Awards winners’ drinks
If it was good enough for royalty, it's good enough for the Awards winners. To Windsor for fun and fizz.
Windsor put on quite a show for the Muddy Awards Winners’ Drinkies – the royal town was a vision of red, white and blue blooms, union jack bunting flapping in the breeze, the Queen’s guards marching past in our honour. Who am I kidding? We were massively riding on the coat tails of Prince Harry and Meghan’s glorious wedding just a few days before our big bash. I wasn’t wearing Givenchy or Stella McCartney, the world’s media weren’t snapping our arrival, but the fizz was chilled, the canapés were out and our Muddy winners were surrounded by kings and queens at the grand Windsor Guildhall.
We cracked open the bubbly at 11am in the same room Elton John and David Furnish and Prince Charles and Camilla said their I dos – and the winners had come to party. Team Muddy – Charlotte and my long suffering mum were on hand to pass around the nibbles and new friendships were forged.
Turn out was fab. Most of the winning businesses made it (for those of you who couldn’t make it, we missed you!) and once we’d all got over the gob-smacking grandness of the venue, we relaxed and had a really fun couple of hours.
The Awards are the hardest but most rewarding time of the year for me – the time when new exciting businesses emerge into the spotlight, everyone pats the back of hard-working local indies, and I remember why I do Muddy Stilettos. I love meeting interesting people, finding out what they do, and telling others about them, so this post is pretty much the easiest thing to write because here they are!
Congratulations to Gilded Hair, Norden Farm and Inspire Hot Yoga who all won in 2016, were pipped at the post last year but victorious in 2018. The Newbury won a gong for the third year running (Casual Dining, Best Bar and now Best Destination Pub) – all hotly contested categories. Hungerford Bookshop and Nirvana Spa, sadly couldn’t make it, but they have retained their crowns for the third year running.
It was awesome to see so many new faces. Emma, owner of B The Lifestyle Shop, won Best Women’s Store, Claire of Turtle Dove Living (Best Interiors Store), Helen from Willow & Blooms (Best Florist), Ali and Claire from West Berkshire Brewery – a double award winner, Best Bar and Best Local Producer – and Jo from the Pineapple Palace (Best Art Gallery) all whizzed down the M4 from West Berkshire to celebrate their success.
The fitness instructors are a competitive bunch, but Zoe from Zest Fitness (occasional model for Best Hair Salon, Gilded Hair) proved #thisgirlcan to win A Muddy in 2018. The boys from Wellington Country Park (Best Family Attraction) looked particularly happy to be surrounded by women for a couple of hours, including Beauty Salon neighbours Beautiful Escape Retreat. Not forgetting, Julia the genius behind Best Children’s Business Concertini a musical concert often stand at Norden Farm and two fabulous Bracknell babes Gemma from Tinkers Gifts (check out her amazing personalised gifts) and Lisa from And The She Clicked, a cool family photographer, who was helping all the winners create an Insta-fabulous boomerang. I blinking knew that confetti was a good idea. It was great fun to meet you all and have natter.
So that’s it, the third Muddy Stilettos Berkshire Awards are over! Thanks to Windsor Guildhall for letting us host the event in such a glorious building, 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 2019 for the fourth year of the Awards , but until then, give a virtual round of applause to …