A summary of a fantastic evening in pictures…

Dedicated care staff from across the county were rewarded for reaching the highest of standards and achieving excellence at our eighth annual Hertfordshire Care Awards.

Eight awards were presented to individuals, teams and companies at the glittering gala bash on Friday, November 23.

The prizes were handed out in front of a packed 400+ audience at the ceremony hosted by Hertfordshire Care Providers Association at Knebworth Barns.

Annette Gibbons, who works at Abbeyfield-run Grace Muriel House in St Albans, walked away with the Care Leadership Award, sponsored by OLM Systems.
The Compassion In Care Award, sponsored by NJS Consultancy Services, went to Lea-Ann Smith, who works at Margaret House in Royston.
Lynne Hubbard, from Hemel Hempstead-based Trips ‘n’ Treats, was the recipient of the Learning Disability Support Award, sponsored by Met Medical.
The Support At Home Award, sponsored by Towergate Insurance, was bagged by Emma Young, who works for home care provider Abbots Care, based in St Albans.
The Most Innovative Care Team Award, sponsored by Ridouts Solicitors, went to Hemel Hempstead’s Druglink Oxygen Recovery Team.
Watford Mencap picked up the Most Innovative Learning Disability Team Award, sponsored by Peninsula Business Services.
Haven Home Support, based in St Albans, were the winners of the Most Innovative Support At Home Team Award, sponsored by Clinisupplies.

And two hard-working and dedicated service users were also recognised on the night; Stevie Lane and Elsie Weston were named joint-winners of the HCPA Learner Award.

Stevie is a service user at St Albans-based charity Earthworks and he completed a Skills for Retail course. Elsie, who lives at the B&M Care-run St Andrews Care Home in Welwyn Garden City, joined a digital skills course, and is now keeping in touch with her granddaughter, who is serving in the RAF.

The guests were entertained by an array of talent on the night including one of the country’s finest Abba tribute acts, Planet Abba. Also wowing the audience were singer Bethan Scanes, saxophonist Dan Goode, magician Tim Lichfield and violinist Lumina, who opened the awards backed by a spectacular light and laser show. And our very own Head of Operations Wesley Strahan-Hughes, who hosted the ceremony, also performed a stirring rendition of This Is Me from blockbuster The Greatest Showman.

The finalists and their colleagues were also able to watch video messages of support from celebrity well-wishers, with former EastEnders star Shaun Williamson, Team GB Olympic swimming ace Rebecca Adlington, snooker legend Willie Thorne and Big Brother’s Nikki Grahame all taking time out to pass on their congratulations.

HCPA fundraised for St John Ambulance on the night with a prize draw and guests taking part in action games, with a superb total of £5,192 being raised for the nation’s leading first aid charity.

Through the Hertfordshire Care Awards 2018, the HCPA celebrates and rewards the successes of care providers within the county and showcases why care in the private, voluntary and independent sectors in the county is outstanding.

HCPA chief executive Sharon Davies branded the night a storming success and was delighted to celebrate the achievements of hard-working and devoted care workers in the county.

She said: “2019 will be our year to launch the new Herts Care Professionals Academy and this night of celebration has been a fitting start to us highlighting the professional status of people who provide care to vulnerable people. Tonight has showcased some of the most heart-warming stories and we are proud to share these in a public show of praise. All the finalists were worthy of certificates and awards tonight!

“I am so delighted to not only reward staff in these awards but also say a great big well done to some of the service users who continue to learn different skills with our community education team. It was lovely to speak of the achievement of Elsie and Stevie – both stars in their own right!”

We will continue to work closely with our partners at Hertfordshire County Council, the Care Quality Commission, Clinical Commissioning Groups, Skills for Care and other public bodies, to help make positive changes in the Herts adult social care sector.

View all the photos of the night, here!