The countdown to the in-Cumbria 2019 Business Awards finally came to a close last night as many businesses, both big and small, alongside business leaders gathered at the Halston in Carlisle for a glittering ceremony where the winners would be revealed. The local respected Business Awards mean a lot to many, showcasing the grit, determination, skill and passion which many businesses possess across the county.

In a year which welcomed a record number of entries TSP Engineering were delighted to be announced as finalists for two categories. One being Best Manufacturing Company, and the other being the biggie, Best Businessperson of the Year – John Coughlan, our CEO.

After a beautiful 3 course meal, some fantastic musical entertainment, and an engaging and funny talk from the host – broadcaster and journalist Cathy Newman – it was time for the winners to be announced. The competition was extremely tough, and unfortunately it wasn’t our year to win the title of Best Manufacturing Company. Although this is of course disappointing, we are unbelievably proud to be shortlisted as finalist in such a popular prestigious competition. Here at TSP Engineering, we have a fantastic hard-working team, and one of the most comprehensively equipped factories in the UK – so in our opinion, we’re still winners! A massive congratulations to the winners of the category, Clark Door Ltd.

The last category of the night was the one everyone had been waiting for, Best Businessperson of the Year. This year, as most are aware, has been a bit of a rollercoaster for TSP Engineering – from all the positive successful news including being the first in the world to achieve ISO 19443, to the sad news surrounding our parent company, British Steel. Our CEO, John Coughlan, has had to make key business decisions, support and reassure employees, work around the clock, and quite frankly secure the future of the business – which has been no easy job.

After what felt like hours of waiting, it was revealed that our very own John Coughlan was successful and gained the well-earned title of Best Businessperson of the Year! The room erupted with applause and cheers as John – who was very shocked – made his way to the stage to collect his award. As a team, we could not be prouder of John. It’s no easy job being a CEO, and in the words of the award organisers “he’s steadied the ship during a turbulent year”. It’s fantastic to see John’s passion, belief and drive for TSP Engineering, his employees and the local economy being recognised by other industry leaders and professionals and we are thrilled that he took the crown for 2019.

John said, “Every honed athlete has a good team behind them. The athlete may receive the award, but without the team behind them doing what they do it wouldn’t happen. I am really delighted and I am delighted for everybody that is a member of our team. We are starting off the year with orders in the order book of almost £45m so that’s almost doubling turnover on an annual basis. It gives us a real good start. We are doing work right across the UK and we’re starting to get recognition outside the UK”.

Luke Dicicco, group business editor at Newsquest Cumbria and editor of in-Cumbria, said: “The awards were a huge success – a real celebration of Cumbria’s business prowess. I’d like to pay specific tribute to John Coughlan for winning what had to be one of the most coveted prizes on the night – Best Businessperson. He, like so many business leaders in the county, has an impressive and inspiring story to tell – achieving great things during a time of significant uncertainty”.

A huge well done to John and to everyone at TSP Engineering – what an achievement! A massive thank you to everyone who was a part of the evening, Newsquest Group and the judges.