On the evening of the last day of November, the 2021 Asian Trader Awards went ahead without a hitch at London’s prestigious Park Plaza Westminster Hotel, opposite Parliament and Big Ben.
Hosted by leading comedian and political satirist Rory Bremner, the special guest was the Right Honourable Kwasi Kwarteng MP, Secretary of State at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
In his keynote speech he praised the leadership and dedication of independent retailers during lockdown. Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng graced the event as chief guest, with leading politicians and captains of industry joining in to herald independent retailers, convenience store and symbol operators, shopkeepers, off-license owners and newsagents from across the UK.
Delivering his keynote speech, Kwarteng said: “I have to say to the companies and business leaders represented here tonight that you have shown a spirit of sacrifice, and huge amounts of real leadership in your communities during the pandemic. It was retailers, day in day out, who were bearing the brunt of the risk to keep people going and to make sure that essential goods and services were provided.”
After last year’s forced migration to online, the return of the Awards to the regular in-person event went smoothly and even efficiently – the atmosphere was one of excitement and anticipation, with great joy coming from friends and colleagues meting for the first time, in some cases, in nearly two years – a great reunion as well as a sumptuous feast and great live entertainment.
The competition among entrants this year was stiff to say the least, with the judges facing some of the hardest choices they had ever had to make in the 32 years of the Awards’ history.
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Asian Trader Awards continue to adhere Government and Public Health Guidance prior to the event.
To reduce the risk of COVID Spread,
- Everyone attending the event will be required to do a lateral flow test within 48 hours prior and upload the results via the NHS website https://www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result
- You can order a lateral flow test kit for free from https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests or you can pick up a test from pharmacies or community centres like libraries.
- We recommend you wear a mask whilst moving around the venue
- Sanitise your hands regularly using stations provided around the venue
- Refrain from shaking hands or fist bumps