A LOCAL business from the heart of Forfar has won one of the county’s most prestigious awards.
The 88° Fine Food Emporium, which offers a cosmopolitan city cafe experience in its Forfar and Kirriemuir branches, has been named Ambassador of the Year 2012.
Phil and Johanna Woodhead, owners of 88°, won the Forbes of Kingennie sponsored award for embodying the spirit and strengths of the county of Angus and were thrilled to be handed the title.
Johanna explained that the ethos behind 88° was quite simply to provide the perfect place for a good cup of coffee and ten minutes of watching the world go by.
She said: “Whenever we went into the building that’s now Kirriemuir’s 88°, we knew we’d found our dream spot.” Since then, the business has expanded to include a branch in Forfar and a small chocolate making facility.
Provost of Angus, Helen Oswald, said: “88° Fine Food Emporium is a fantastic ambassador for our county. Owners Phil and Johanna Woodhead used their creativity, entrepreneurial spirit and passion for sourcing high quality local produce to grow their business over the past 10 years and they now have two units and a small production facility.
“This is an example of how small businesses contribute to the economic prosperity of our county.”
Phil and Johanna were presented their award in front of 200 guests at the Angus Ambassador Awards held at Carnoustie Golf Hotel.
At the ceremony, guests heard how 88° Fine Food Emporium are one of many of the small businesses that make up the backbone of the local economy. However, they were chosen as Ambassadors for 2012 thanks to their big ambitions and stacks of talent.
Another Forfarian won big on the night in the Youth Ambassador section. Glenn Ross, a 21-year-old piper won the ‘Aspiring Youth Award’. Glenn plays with Northern Ireland’s multi-award winning Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band and is an inspiration to many youngsters in the town.
Other award winners included Piperdam Golf & Leisure Resort as Business Ambassador who won ‘The Entrepreneurial Angus Award’ sponsored by Enterprise North East Trust. Piperdam is a highly-popular holiday and leisure resort which is currently focusing on increasing its green credentials and further expansion.
Carnoustie Gala Committee was named Community Ambassador with ‘The Pride of Angus Award’, sponsored by Voluntary Action Angus. The committee won the award for their annual gala day which brings the people of the town together as well as raising large sums for local charities and attracting visitors from as far afield as Ireland, France and Australia.
Kirriemuir based community group DD8 Music were named Cultural Ambassador by winning ‘The Creative Angus Award’, sponsored by Glamis Castle. The group won for their involvement in the community and their activities such as the highly successful ‘Bon Fest’ and ‘Live in the Den’ festivals.
The International Ambassador, ‘The GoAhead Angus Award’, sponsored by Angus Council, went to Kirriemuir-based J&D Wilkie Ltd, manufacturer of textile products and holder of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in International Trade.
Brucefield B&B in Arbroath won the Tourism Ambassador, ‘The Welcome Angus Award’, sponsored by Piperdam Golf & Leisure Resort. The boutique five-star B&B in Arbroath was recently awarded the Tripadvisor accolade of offering the best sleep quality of any UK property.
Provost Oswald said: “These are the people, businesses and organisations who are ensuring our county’s standing as one of the best places in Scotland to live, work and visit continues to grow.
“On behalf of everyone in Angus, I would like to say thank you to all the winners for using their skills, talents and ambition to so successfully raise awareness of Angus locally, nationally and internationally.”