Yep! We did it!
Then came our category, the Leisure and Tourism nominations.
Followed by the long wait for the announcement of the winner.
And finally, the realisation that we had won!
I was later told that we had got the loudest cheer of the evening. I did not hear a thing. Karen had said that she would not get up on stage with me. I just grabbed her hand and she followed. Colonel Bob Steward presented us with the award.
Formal photocall, then a couple of words with Chris Cordner of the Hartlepool Mail. And back to our table past congratulatory faces and handshakes.
We thought it was all over but later on in the evening we found out to our total surprise that we were nominated along two other firms for the Hartlepool Business of the Year.