Your Partnerships 5th Anniversary Awards Night

On Saturday 25 March 2023 we celebrated five years of Your Partnerships at Boringdon Golf Club in Plymouth. It almost seems unbelievable that we have got to the point, after just five years, where we can have a gala dinner of 200+ people, and awards in 20 categories, receiving over 330 nominations in total. It was wonderful to see so many of you there, and a huge thank you to all the Your Partnerships team, and the crew at Boringdon, who made this happen.

Thanks to the fabulous Motown Pirates, who closed out the night with a series of dance-floor classics that had everyone on their feet. Our thanks also to Creation Balloons and Events, who ran a very popular casino, where no-one went home broke, and everyone had a fun evening.


Awards and recognition

The awards presentation part of the evening recognises the contributions of members across the board, and has grown each year, to accommodate the different types of business, and impacts, that we want to acknowledge. The format allows for anyone in the membership to nominate any other member under a series of categories, this year including eight opportunities to celebrate local businesses.

Many of our nominees posted to LinkedIn when they were informed, and for a while it seemed that every other post on there was someone being chuffed to have received recognition for their work. We’re honoured that it means so much to people, and delighted that the community we have nurtured is so quick to recognise and celebrate their peers.

After the nominations closed in January, the awards process largely passed out of the hands of anyone directly involved with YP. All the nominees were asked to fill out a form with information relevant to each category they were nominated in, which were then redacted to remove all the names and identifying details. The forms, together with the judging criteria, were handed to a group of four graduate students who are writing their theses on ceremonies and events. Together with Brock, they created a scoring matrix for each category, at which point Brock stepped aside and left the panel to award points to each nominee, based on the criteria for the award in question.

Those businesses that were read out as finalists on the night rose to the top during the scoring, whether there were five or eleven that were read out. We know there were some who were nominated but not acknowledged on the night, but this is simply due to the number of nominations. Networker of the Year received a whopping 37 nominations, and we had to narrow the field, rather than taking up the whole evening reading the names. Better luck next time, if you missed out on the shortlist.

The winner was also chosen by the independent panel, based on their scoring. This looked at the extent to which they met the award criteria, and the ‘above and beyond’ factor; how far what they were nominated for is part of their day job, and how much is what they choose to do, or effort they put in, beyond that.

Congratulations to all our amazing winners and finalists – there will be a full blog post with all the details and photos here!

Armed Forces Covenant

The last part of the formal evening featured Brock signing the Armed Forces Covenant on behalf of Your Partnerships.

The official website explains the covenant:

" The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation that those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, should be treated fairly and should not face disadvantages when seeking to access public or private goods and services in the UK.

The Covenant is a voluntary pledge. Organisations may choose to sign up in order to demonstrate their support for the Armed Forces Community and for the principles of the Covenant. All organisations – public, private or voluntary and small, medium or large – are welcome to sign the Covenant.

As a former member of the US Navy, supporting current and former military personnel is very important to Brock, and he was delighted to sign the covenant on behalf of Your Partnerships, and surrounded by ten former and current military colleagues. Jon Beake, Regional Employment Engagement Director for the Ministry of Defence (front left in group photo), and the covenant was co-signed by Jos Tector, AB (EW) Assigned to HMS Collingwood, the armed forces representative.

The covenant is designed to give businesses a way to show that they intend to attract and support current and former servicemen and women, reservists, part time military, and cadets, and their family members, and ensure that their skills and talents are given space to flourish, and their specific support needs are catered for as well. We are delighted to be formally signing up to the Armed Forces Covenant, and would be happy to speak with anyone interested in finding out more about it.


Photographs by Lizzie Melvin, Words by Hannah Danson of HD Words.