BRADFORD's business community gathered this week to network and hear the latest from 'Bradford Means Business'.

The sleek new quarterly magazine and its accompanying website, published by the Telegraph & Argus, were launched earlier this year.

They celebrate all that's great about business in Bradford - all of which will be highlighted in a major awards ceremony later this year.

The Bradford Means Business Awards will be held in the heart of the city centre on July 18 inside a huge marquee which will be erected in City Park.

It promises to be a night to remember. There will be a red carpet entrance to the marquee, with the black tie awards dinner taking place inside.

The night will also include a full drinks reception and entertainment, all set against the stunning backdrop of City Hall and located right next to the Mirror Pool.

This is the first time the awards, which have previously been hosted at the Aagrah Midpoint venue in Thornbury, have been held in City Park.

Awards to be presented on the night include SME Business of the Year, Employer of the Year, New Business of the Year, Business Entrepreneur of the Year, Customer Service Excellence Award, Apprentice of the Year, Contribution to the Community Award, Manufacturer of the Year, Family Business of the Year, Job Creator of the Year and the Winners Award.

The judging process took place this week, where the panel was kindly hosted by the Great Victoria Hotel in Bradford city centre.

Stephen Wright, Managing Director of Laisterdyke-based Thorite, was a part of the panel.

And while sworn to secrecy, he said the awards were a great opportunity to shine a spotlight on Bradford's manufacturing sector.

He said: "Bradford has got a huge amount of manufacturing and I think it's underloved and under recognised.

"We've got to promote what is good about Bradford business and about manufacturing - make sure that people within Bradford are aware of how important manufacturing is to the amount of jobs that there, employment, to the amount it puts into the economy."

He added: "The Bradford Means Business Awards actually celebrates all of that and enables the cream of businesses to come to the top."

Mr Wright said he had been impressed by entries in all categories.

The networking event was also an opportunity to hear more about what Bradford Means Business has planned for the coming months.

One of the main events in the calendar will be the Retail, Leisure and Hospitality Awards.

It will take place in conjunction with The Broadway and the Bradford BID on Sunday, November 10. For the latest business news, visit