A touch of Hollywood was on show in Stratford on Saturday when the Romeo business awards were handed out.
Along with the red carpet, glitz and gowns, the Romeo award itself even looked reminiscent of the famous Oscar statue.
Seven of the golden gongs were awarded over the course of the night in recognition of top quality customer service provided by Stratford businesses as well as individual workers.
Close to 300 separate nominations were made by members of the public ahead of the awards night, which has been sold out for weeks. Following the nominations, a series of visits were made by mystery shoppers to help narrow the field down to five finalists in each category.
One man who savoured personal success on the night was Craig Hassell, who won best service person male and best service person rural, for his work as a veterinarian at Stratford Vets.
He said he was surprised and humbled by his awards but also wanted to thank his team for all their support. "There's not one day in the last 25 years that I haven't wanted to go to work."
Another popular recipient was Collette Holgate, from the town's transfer station, who received a huge cheer when she won the best female service award.
All of the awards were sponsored by Stratford district businesses, including Brian Darth Funeral Services, who sponsored the youth award won by Lani Moritz from Paper Plus.
Owner Brian Darth said he hoped the awards continued to be held into the future.
Close to 500 people attended the awards evening.
- Taranaki Daily News
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