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Business matters: Why family buusiness should be supported as a crucial component to our economy

Sue Howorth and Dave Clarkson, directors of The Family Business Network discuss the important role that family businesses play within their communities and the wider economic success of the UK, plus why we should support them.

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Cumbria Family Business Awards Expand to Cover Entire North West

Hosted by the Family Business Network Ltd, NWFBA has evolved from the popular Cumbria Family Business Awards to now covering Cumbria, Lancashire, Merseyside, Cheshire and Greater Manchester. Sue Howorth and Dave Clarkson talk to That’s TV about the North West Family Business Awards and how they celebrate the region’s family businesses.


Local sponsors supporting new Family Business Awards

The business community across the region are supporting the new North West Family Business Awards – which celebrates the achievements of family businesses in this area as well as from Cumbria, Merseyside, Cheshire, Lancashire and Greater Manchester.

Local businesses have welcomed the sponsorship opportunities created by the new awards, and to champion and represent family businesses of all shapes, sizes and ages from across the region – and there are still time for more businesses to get involved.

The new awards have evolved from the successful Cumbria Family Business Awards, established by The Family Business Network. The expansion of the awards has created new sponsorship opportunities.

Co-Director of The Family Business Network, Dave Clarkson said: “Our sponsorship packages offer the chance to get involved and be a part of a comprehensively marketed Awards ceremony which champions family businesses, and the contributions they make to the successes across the North West region.

“We look forward to celebrating family businesses, thank our existing and welcoming new sponsors for the North West awards.”

North West firms are keen to support the 2020 awards. Carol Fish, Head of Personal Injury and Marketing Director at Cartmell Shepherd Solicitors in Cumbria said: “Cartmell Shepherd are proud to be sponsoring the Cumbria People’s Choice Award.

“A large number of our clients are family businesses and they play an invaluable role in our local community. Being in the local community is also part of our own business ethos. Good luck to all of the finalists and we look forward to celebrating with you on the evening.”

Des Metcalfe, Director Front Row Graphics based in Sedbergh said: “It’s both a pleasure and a privilege to lend our support to the Family Business Awards this year, as we very much look forward to celebrating this amazing community and the people who make it happen.

“Family businesses play a vital role within our communities and economy, and this is a sector we feel deserves recognition for their contributions. The new North West Awards provide a great platform for raising the profile of these businesses, and celebrate their successes.”

Maria Ramsdale, Investment Executive at FW Capital based in the Cumbrian office in Penrith said: “Supporting the Family Business Network Awards for the North West of England is very important to us at FW Capital as we work across the region, supporting businesses.

“This is a sector of the market which is so vibrant and innovative. Family Businesses of all sizes are growing. We feel it is important not only to celebrate but to raise the profile of this very important sector. We are delighted to be able to help support the first North West Family Business Network Awards.”

Sheena McDermott, North West Programme Manager Be The Business said: “Our mission at Be the Business is encourage companies large and small to work together and share expertise that will help make the UKs businesses more productive. Supporting the North West Family Business Awards is a great way for us to recognise those family businesses that have made engaging their staff and learning from other businesses a part of their DNA.”

Grahame Latus, Enterprise Answers: “Enterprise Answers has been a staunch supporter of the Cumbria Family Business Awards since its inception and it was a given that we would remain loyal and follow this through in supporting the inaugural North West Family Business Awards. As an organisation we have always been passionate about supporting family businesses, fully recognising the contribution they make to the economy, locally and nationally. Lancashire is one of our specific areas for growth and it is fitting that we embrace the opportunity to showcase ourselves in the region through sponsorship of The People’s Choice for Lancashire.”

Karen Morley-Chesworth of sponsors Chesworth Communications said: “All our clients are family businesses, as we are ourselves and we are aware of the positive impact these businesses have on our local economy.

“We are so pleased to be able to be part of an event which celebrates and raised the profile of the many family firms providing employment, great services and supporting their local communities.”

The Family Business Network was founded in 2014 by Sue Howorth in Cumbria however, the expansion across the north of England, has led to the new North West Awards.

Sue said: “The Family Business Network’s sponsorship packages offer the chance for firms and organisations to get involved and be a part of an event which highlights the North West family business sector on a national stage, with winners of each category having the opportunity to gain further recognition at the UK-wide Family Business of the Year Awards run by Family Business United.”

Sponsors for the 2020 Awards include; NXT Recruitment, Cartmell Shepherd, Enterprise Answers, Be The Business, Hawkshead Relish, FW Capital, Chesworth Communications, Front Row Graphics, Miles Moore Ceramics, Lamont Pridmore, net*, Western Pensions, Cumbriashare, Lancashare and Mancheshare. And there are still opportunities for more businesses to be involved.

As well as full category sponsorship packages, there are also smaller sponsorship opportunities to fit every businesses’ budget.

Dave added: “We would like to thank our sponsors to date for their support. Sponsorship for a number of categories has already been sold out, however, there are more sponsorship opportunities available for the North West Family Business Awards and information is available in our Sponsorship Pack.”

Businesses interested in finding out what sponsorship opportunities are available are invited to contact Dave by emailing or calling 07908 783305, alternatively contact Sue by emailing or calling 07866 536050.

Entries for the awards, across 10 categories have until 16 January 2020 to enter their own business or nominate another online for free.


Judges from each of the five areas will come together to select the finalists who will be announced at the North West Awards ceremony at the Concorde Hanger at Manchester Airport’s Runway Visitor Centre with host food writer and presenter Nigel Barden.


For more information about the Family Business Network visit: and to nominate a family business for the Awards or enter visit:  before the deadline at midnight on 16 January 2020. And you can follow the awards on social media with the hashtags #NWFBA202 and #WeAreNorthWest.




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