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Village businesses triumph at Wiltshire Life Awards

TWO local businesses won awards at last month’s Wiltshire Life Awards.

The Toast Office, on Top Lane in Whitley was crowned ‘Village Shop of the Year’, whilst its owner, Luke Johnson, came second in the ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ category. 

The White Hart pub in Atworth, also celebrated success, coming second in the ‘Pub of the Year’ category.

Luke, who was a Melksham  News Person of the Year 2018 nominee, said, “I couldn’t believe I’d won! To have even be nominated was an achievement on its own, but to actually win ‘Village Shop of the Year’ is tremendous.

“I feel out of the two nominations (including ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’) the village shop award is more of an accurate reflection on what we are about. 

“It’s not about myself but about The Toast Office as a whole and everyone behind it. Ranging from the amazing people I work with, my friends and family who have supported me from the start, all the way to the superb visitors who we all adore and quite frankly couldn’t be without. 

“The Toast Office has nestled in quite nicely as the community hub of Whitley and I couldn’t be happier with it. A huge thank you to all those who support us and the little Toast Office dream.”

The White Hart’s Nathan and Kirsty Cortilla, who won Melksham News Person of the Year 2018, said, “We had a fantastic night being part of such a brilliant event and at a stunning venue. We enjoyed a superb dinner, chatted to some wonderful people, heard some amazing stories and witnessed awards been given to so many people for great things.

“We were a finalist for ‘Pub of The Year’ and were thrilled to bits to come home with second place. The announcement took us by surprise and we are truly overwhelmed with this great result as we were up against some outstanding pubs, who all deserve recognition for their hard work and commitment.

“We want to thank all The White Hart team, we wouldn’t have been here without you.”

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