Hire Awards of Excellence 2021 winners revealed during hybrid awards ceremony

Held in real-time in a studio and streamed live across the UK, HAE EHA’s Hire Awards of Excellence winners have been revealed in a hybrid awards ceremony.

More than 75 companies from within the hire, plant and event industries were logged on via over 200 devices and watching along in their offices and homes.

Proceedings began with host, BBC Business presenter, Maryam Moshiri welcoming HAE EHA CEO, Paul Gaze to the stage to deliver his first welcoming address at the prestigious awards. This was followed by Brian Sherlock, association chair who announced that the recipient of the Outstanding Contribution to Hire was HAE EHA’s policy and public affairs manager, Mark Bradshaw for his tireless campaigning on behalf of the hire industry throughout the pandemic.

Announcing the winner Brian said: “I would like to thank Mark Bradshaw on behalf of the Board and members of the association for his dedication and commitment in public affairs.  Mark has lobbied Government on behalf of our industry to ensure hire and rental is deemed as ‘essential retail’ and classified to remain open during the first lockdown.  He is continuing the journey with Red Diesel and Hire Industry Theft.”

The awards ceremony then got underway in earnest with Maryam Moshiri announcing those highly commended and the award winners. Awards went to independents such as: Smiths Hire for Website of the Year; Ardent Hire Solutions for Best Sustainability and CSR Initiative and PSM Plant & Hire Centres for SafeHire Company of the Year, Turnover up to £10 million.  Whilst a JCB and Travis Perkins partnership took home the coveted prize of Hire Industry Product of the Year for the impressive 1T-2 Dumper which judges had applauded as a great innovation that would hopefully prevent death and injuries in the future.

Biggest Winner

Undoubtedly, the biggest winner on the night was Sunbelt Rentals who took home an incredible five outright award wins and two Highly Commended.

The company’s CEO, Andy Wright commented: “This is a great honour for Sunbelt Rentals UK to receive five Hire Awards of Excellence, in the same year. I personally could not be more proud of our whole team, who responded magnificently to every one of the challenges that were thrown at us over the last year. Not only did we have to deal with the safety related issues of the pandemic but we were also tasked with supporting the UK response to it and we did this on a massive scale with our people worked night and day to deliver for the country.

“In addition, and at the same time, we re-branded the whole of our business, establishing our joined- up group of 20 complementary specialist business units all operating under a single unified Sunbelt Rentals banner.

“This has been quite an achievement but our team has faced every challenge head on and delivered consistently and to a high quality, whilst at the same time continuing to support our fast growing customer base, as they also navigated their way through the crisis. I would also like to give a special mention to our Young Apprentice of the Year, Lucy O’Rourke, who we are very proud of.”

Other Winners

Other individual award winners on the night were: Charlotte Bingham, Travis Perkins Plc, Apprentice of the Year; Andrew Smith, Speedy, Workshop Manager of the Year and Luke Davies of who received the accolade of Hire Manager of the Year and Hire Achiever of the Year.

Commenting on his first Hire Awards of Excellence as HAE EHA CEO, Paul Gaze was thrilled with the hybrid awards ceremony and said: “Whilst holding an in-person event wasn’t possible for 2021, it was more important than ever to be able to recognise the extraordinary achievements of the hire, plant and event industries in the face of tremendous adversity. I have been amazed by the resilience shown by our members since March 2020, despite the challenges and difficulties they have dug deep to continue their businesses and protect their staff.

“We know from talking to the membership how much the Hire Awards of Excellence means to them and hope that everyone watching online enjoyed the ceremony as much as we did and made an occasion of it. The number and calibre of those companies who joined the livestream would certainly attest to that.”

All the winners and a replay of the virtual Hire Awards of Excellence 2021 can be viewed here. The 2022 Hire Awards of Excellence will return to the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on 7th May.