The deadline for Dorset’s premier business awards has been extended in response to busy businesses desperate to enter.

This together with a packed schedule of summer events such as the World Cup and Wimbledon, as well as the unprecedented heatwave with more people taking extra holiday, organisers the Dorset Chamber have taken the decision to extend the deadline to Thursday August 9 at midnight to give potential prize-winners extra time to enter.

The awards, in association with the Daily Echo and Dorset Echo, have 13 categories that recognise the achievements of businesses, individuals and teams.  Businesses of all sizes, which are based in Dorset or have a BH/DT postcode, can enter for free via, regardless of whether they are a member of the Dorset Chamber.

The categories for 2018 are:

  • Business Leader of the Year, sponsored by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership
    • Honouring an individual making a significant contribution to the wider business community and the local economy
  • Dorset Environmental Business Award, sponsored by Dorset Wildlife Trust and Poole Harbour Commissioners
    • Recognising a business with an outstanding commitment to manage their environmental impact
  • Exporting Excellence, sponsored by HSBC and PSP Worldwide Logistics
    • A celebration of the contributions Dorset exporters have made to both the county and national economy
  • Outstanding Customer Service Award, sponsored by Beales Gourmet and Teachers Building Society
    • Recognising a business exceeding customer expectation by delivering a world class experience
  • TeamJobs Team of the Year
    • Rewarding professionalism and hard work of teams in Dorset
  • Sunseeker International Developing Talent Award
    • Celebrating an employer who is proactive and engaged in attracting, retaining and developing people
  • Young Apprentice Ambassador of the Year, sponsored by Superior Seals
    • Recognising young individuals who are strong advocates of apprenticeships
  • Creative Impact Award, sponsored by Liz Lean PR and Digipigz
    • Recognising the talent and contribution of the creative sector in Dorset
  • Employee Health and Wellbeing Award, sponsored by BWT Physio and Ouch Training Team
    • Honouring an employer leading their commitment to the health and wellbeing of their workforce
  • Lester Aldridge Company of the Year
    • Rewarding Dorset’s premier company. A market leader with strong growth and a dedication to excellence in products and services
  • PKF Francis Clark Family Business Award
    • Recognising and celebrating the success of the significant role family businesses play in our local economy
  • The ScaleUp for Business Growth Award, sponsored by Enhanced
    • Honouring a business demonstrating spectacular growth with a robust plan for sustainability
  • UK Health Insurance Investing in Dorset Award, sponsored by UK Health Insurance
    • Celebrating Dorset businesses who proactively support other businesses in the county for the benefit of the local economy

Stuart Dixon, head of marketing communications at Dorset Chamber, said: “The number of businesses in the region hoping to win this year’s Dorset Business Awards has prompted the decision to extend the entry deadline.

“We want as many businesses as possible to throw their hat into the ring and have the chance to compete in Dorset’s premier business awards.”

The awards are also backed by the south’s leading radio station Wave 105.  Short-listed finalists will be announced mid-September and the winners will be unveiled at a prestigious gala dinner on Thursday November 1 at the Bournemouth International Centre.

For further information about the Awards, which are also backed by the south’s leading radio station Wave 105, or to reserve tickets for the Gala Dinner please contact the DBA team on 01202 714800.