This week the organisers of the Northamptonshire Logistics Awards join Ben on the podcast. Charlotte Patrick and Tony Bellott have been organising the awards since 2016, and 2023’s upcoming ceremony marks the sixth edition of this fantastic event.
Tony begins by discussing his experience working his way up through the logistics sector from unloading trucks at John Lewis to leaving the business as General Manager of their national distribution centre network. Both emphasise how increasingly important logistics has become to the entire economy over the years, especially with the advent of online shopping and the pandemic increasing how much the economy relies on supply chains and logistics.
Where the Northamptonshire Logistics Awards Started
Moving on to the awards, the first event was held in 2016 in a John Lewis warehouse and was catered for by a local curry house, lending a unique vibe to the evening that drew people in and provided an excellent base to build the awards’ brand. Due to it being in a warehouse, some people were referring to it as a rave, which was not entirely accurate.
Since then, the awards have gone from strength to strength, with the most recent edition had over 300 people in attendance. When they began in 2016, 1 in 7 people in the county worked in logistics, but now that number could be 1 in 6 considering some of the businesses that have moved into the area, such as Amazon.
Charlotte makes the point that, despite that figure seeming high initially, it makes sense when considering the optimal location Northampton has, close to many major airports and with easy access to many major motorways.
Highlights of Running the Awards
Ben asks what have been some of their highlights over their years of running the awards. Tony discusses Marisa Baker, who received a Chairman’s Special Award for her role in helping Andreijs Kaunietis go from homeless to employed in six months, including buying him a bike to help him get to work more easily. At the awards, she received a standing ovation for her hard work helping Andreijs get his life back on track.
The podcast ends off with a rundown of the categories, with Charlotte reiterating that entries are open!
The Awards will take place on 13th October 2023 at The Park Inn, Northampton. Find out more on their website.