THE cream of Keighley district's business community has been celebrated.

Victoria Hall in the town was packed for the seventh annual Keighley and Airedale Business Awards.

Businesses were recognised for their achievements during the past year at Friday’s glittering event.

Compere Harry Gration, the journalist and BBC Look North presenter, said: “This is one of the very best awards events and a privilege to cover.”

He also paid tribute to Keighley Business Club, which he has supported and was the headline sponsor for the ceremony.

The event – which was opened by the Lord Mayor of Bradford, Keighley councillor Doreen Lee – saw awards handed out across around a dozen categories.

Sections included new business, micro business, small and medium-sized enterprise, independent trader, manufacturing and engineering, apprentice/trainee/young professional, social enterprise, hospitality, media business of the year and business personality of the year.

The coveted Overall Business of the Year accolade was awarded to Keighley construction company RN Wooler & Co Ltd, which also took the Small and Medium-sized Business of the Year title.

Since the family firm was founded in 1985 by managing director Norman Wooler, it has undertaken 23,000 projects.

It has grown into a multi-million pound operation with a directly-employed workforce of around 250.

A spokesman said the company was proud of its presence in Keighley and delighted that its achievements had been recognised.

“Much of our past success has come from repeat business from within a five-to-ten-mile radius of our base,” he said.

“Recently we have launched a new website and we will be marketing the business more widely – and the small and medium-sized business award will help us in doing that.

“Keighley people mean a lot to us and we hope we mean a little bit to them too.”

About the Overall Business of the Year honour, he added: “It’s great to be rubbing shoulders with the likes of Timothy Taylor’s, which we hold in high esteem.

“Whilst Mr Wooler senior could not be there for the presentation, he will be very pleased that we have won this award.”

The Small and Medium-sized Business of the Year category was sponsored by Keighley-based IT company, Cosurica. It works with a range of businesses and public and third-sector organisations throughout the Aire Valley and beyond.

Organisers of the awards are keen to hear from anyone interested in getting involved in the staging of next year’s event.

Visit for more details and to get in touch.