The Mart's the Heart Awards
Who's got your bid?
The Mart's the Heart Awards are bigger, better and back for 2017. Following on from the success of the first Mart’s the Heart Awards last year, which attracted more than 453 nominations and close to 9,000 votes, the campaign will run again this summer with an additional category.
The Mart’s the Heart Awards highlight the vital role auctions and auctioneers play within the livestock industry and this is your opportunity to champion those within the sector you feel deserve special recognition. Nominations for Auctioneer of the Year, New Auctioneer of the Year and Auction Cafe of the Year can be nominated by anyone, or auctioneers and cafes can nominate themselves.
A panel of judges will select candidates for the Lifetime Achievement Award.
These awards aim to identify and acknowledge driven, progressive auctioneers, as well as rewarding cafes which are often the hub of farming life. Individual auctioneers and cafes can be nominated by anyone, including themselves and their customers. You can choose to enter or nominate in any number of categories, although last year’s winner of the auctioneer and new auctioneer awards cannot be nominated for the same category again.
The panel of judges will select candidates for the Lifetime Achievement Award. All you need to do is fill in the online form. Each auctioneer nomination also needs to be accompanied by a short piece (maximum 400 words), explaining why you think this person or cafe is a potential winner. It does not need to be in-depth, but the more detail we have, the more convincing case each entry will have. For cafe nominations, we just require the name of the mart, but any additional information about why it is so popular would be welcome too. The awards will be presented at the British Farming Awards in October and we hope you will help us identify and reward individuals and cafes which are doing a great job for everyone in the industry.
The Mart's the Heart Awards 2016 winner
MEG ELLIOTT, LEEK AUCTIONS
This award aims to identify and acknowledge popular, driven, progressive auctioneers, based on what they are putting back into the agricultural marketplace.
WILL PROBERT, NR.G. AND R.B. WILLIAMS
The New Auctioneer of the Year Award will identify and reward trainee and newly qualified auctioneers (within three years of qualifying), based on skills, attitude and contribution to the agricultural community.
THE TAVERN, MELTON MOWBRAY
The all-important Auction Cafe of the Year will identify the UK’s premier auction cafe – the centre of mart life. The aim is to reward a cafe which is doing a fantastic job serving its customers with high quality food and drinks and creating a real mart community hub.
2016 Winner round up
Well, what a response. We received almost 5,000 votes across all of the three categories in the inaugural Mart’s the Heart Awards.
The aim was to recognise not only the business roles which auctions and auctioneers play within the livestock industry, but also what auctioneers themselves contribute to farming and rural communities outside the walls of the markets in which they work.
And it was clear from the weight of voting, clients were keen to lend their support and boost the chances of their chosen individuals. The judges – Livestock Auctioneers Association (LAA) executive secretary Chris Dodds and his Scottish area counterpart Andrew Wright, plus Barclays national agricultural specialist Oliver McEntyre – did not have an easy job in assessing initial nominations and auctioneer submissions, and balancing these assessments against public votes.
Obviously, there could only be one winner in each category, but the judges stressed they hoped all those nominated this year, plus a great deal more, would feature in next year’s line-up.
As businesses and careers evolve, there is every reason for others to just as easily come to the fore.
They said it was important to recognise ways in which people had taken steps to engage with their community – sometimes not always in ways directly related to agriculture.
It was also important to acknowledge, especially for the main auction category, how individual auctioneers helped steer their auction’s business to cope with changing dynamics in domestic and global markets.
Judges said they were at pains to ensure those chosen were deserving winners.
This year, the Auction Cafe of the Year Award was based on the weight of public nominations and final vote from customers – and the end result was a clear winner.
All three category winners will be profiled in coming issues of Farmers Guardian ahead of the LAA dinner and awards presentation in early November.
We look forward to the next awards!
Head of commercial sales and development
The vOTING Process
A combination of the public vote and the opinions of the judging panel were used to select a winner in each category. The winners were selected in mid-October and presented at the Livestock Auctioneers Association AGM lunch in November 2015.