Durham Hens was named 'Microbusiness of the Year' at the Federation of Small Businesses and Worldpay UK Business Awards.
The company based at Tow Law, County Durham was chosen regional winner for the North East and Yorkshire, and was then selected to go forward to the national final.
The final was held on 10th May at The Globe, London, at an event hosted by Tim Campbell MBE, the first winner of the TV show ‘The Apprentice’. Guest speakers, Tim Farron MP (Leader of the Liberal Democrats) and Margot Stour MP (Minister for Small Business) both gave inspirational speeches on the importance of small businesses to the UK economy.
The Microbusiness category was open to businesses with fewer than 10 employees. There are 5 million in the UK.
Durham Hens, run by Margaret and Alec Manchester, sell laying hens, pure and rare breed chickens, fertile hatching eggs and poultry supplies from their premises. Alec said,"Our reputation for selling quality stock and providing helpful advice has spread. We take it as a huge compliment when people travel from all over the country to visit us." Durham Hens also sell poultry supplies through e-commerce, offer a regional delivery service, courses on chicken-keeping and a boarding service for hens.
Margaret began rearing chicks ten years ago and the business has grown from these humble beginnings. She said, “It is very satisfying, and touching, to see how Durham Hens has grown and developed to meet demand. It’s was an honour to be selected as a finalist, but to win the national title is a phenomenal achievement. To have our team's hard work and dedication recognised at this level is just amazing!”