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Queen's Award for Enterprise


As the economy of East Sussex begins to recover from the pandemic, Sussex businesses are being encouraged to celebrate their success and boost confidence in the area by entering the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise (QAE).

This is the most prestigious award for UK businesses, recognising  and celebrating business excellence across the UK. Now in its 55th year, the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise allow winning businesses to use the prestigious Queen’s Award emblem for five years. There are four categories to choose from - International Trade, Innovation, Sustainable Development and Promoting Opportunity (through social mobility).

Her Majesty The Queen personally approves the winners and The Lord-Lieutenant of East Sussex, the Queen’s local representative, presents the awards to the winners. It is hoped that 2022 will see the return of the customary Royal Reception at Buckingham Palace for the winners (subject to government guidelines).

The closing date for award entries is looming, so don’t delay. The deadline is September 8 and all the relevant information, including the entry form, is available online. Applications are free, and the online process is thorough, but simple.

Sir Peter Field, Lord-Lieutenant of East Sussex, said: “It has been wonderful to see local businesses win The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise over the last couple of years, but the awards do not have a high-enough profile. I would encourage businesses to shake off the shackles of lockdown and celebrate their achievements by entering these incredible awards. This is a chance to be rewarded through the highest accolade in the UK.”

Newhaven-based Cheeky Baby Products Ltd won a QAE in the category of Sustainable Development earlier this year. The company manufactures reusable baby, beauty and hygiene products.

Helen Rankin set up the business in 2011 and now employs a 16-strong team. The company has sustainability principles at the heart of its products, each providing are usable alternative to single use baby wipes, make-up removing wipes  and absorbent underwear and pads for period and incontinence use.

Its championing and support for education and charitable programmes is particularly positive, as is its high expectations and support for supply chain partners. Sustainability is at the core of the business operational and investment model, and its future strategic priorities.  

“At Cheeky Wipes, we're all about integrity and authenticity, which is what appealed to us about the QAE, rather than media awards,” Helen explained. “The application process is demanding, but manageable. We were definitely put through our paces, but I would encourage all businesses to take a look and see if there’s a category that suits them. We were over the moon to win the Sustainable Development category, it underscores everything we do and it was lovely to have this recognised with such a fantastic award.”

Cheeky Wipes is one of 205 organisations to be recognised with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise this year and was selected as one of the 17 winners for its excellence in Sustainable Development.