DOUBLE business award winner Owen Mumford has said it still wants to hit a pre-recession plan to double in size by 2020.

The company, a medical device maker that has restored Chipping Norton’s role as a manufacturing centre, was named Oxfordshire Business of the Year and also won the Carter Jonas Export award on Friday night.

Chipping Norton lost its last large traditional employer when furniture maker Parker Knoll closed its factory in London Road 10 years ago, with the loss of more than 500 jobs.

But Owen Mumford – named after its 1952 founders Ivan Owen and John Mumford – has since expanded into two buildings on the site, making medical products such as insulin pens for diabetics, employing 300 people there and another 300 in Woodstock.

Accepting the award in front of an audience of 500 at a gala dinner at the Four Pillars Hotel in Sandford, Owen Mumford finance director Gavin Jones said: “We are really proud.

“We think we can achieve the target we set ourselves in 2008, before the recession, to double in size by 2020.”

Karl Durham, 43, of Banbury-based International Applications, said he was “overwhelmed” at being named Oxfordshire Business Person of the Year. “I started my first business at 19 – Paintbox, an automotive supplier. Since then I have built up other companies and I now have 12 different businesses, each successful in their own way.”

Young Business Person of the Year is Mike Hawkins, 32, commercial director of the Hawkins Group, set up by his father in 1999 in Banbury. He said: “I have transformed it from a 250,000 a year roofing business into a logistics and steel fabrication business with £10m turnover.”

Neil Brodey, of Employer of the Year Norbar Torque Tools, of Banbury, said: “It’s just fantastic to win. We really are passionate about our people. Last year we won the export award but to win this is so important to us.”

Simon Lassam, founder of web design company Ridgeway, of Witney, said he was “absolutely amazed” at being Small Business of the Year. “There were more than 70 entries, so to be shortlisted was an honour, but to win after starting two and a half years ago, and to have seen the growth that we have, is amazing.”

Lee McQueen, a former winner of TV show The Apprentice, received the New Business Award for his sales recruitment agency Raw Talent Academy, based in Watlington. He said: “I am absolutely delighted. I quit my job with Lord Sugar two-and-a-half years ago to set this up and now we are recognised as one of the best businesses in Oxfordshire. My team have been incredible.”

Alex Walker, of domestic appliance maker Miele’s Abingdon centre, said her team was “astounded” to win the Hays Customer Care Award for the second year. “We were very surprised – to win two years running is quite something.” Juliet Machan, of Henley-based Perfectly Picked, invited her client Claire Ginn from VM Ware to share the Marketing Excellence Award, given for a digital advent calendar which proved a powerful marketing tool. Ms Machan said: “We worked on it together, so it was a joint project.”

Alison Isherwood, of Cultural Events and Tourism Award winner Thame Food Festival, said: “We are just starting the publicity for this year’s festival on September 28, so this has come at a really good time.”

Chipping Norton-based creative agency Mark-making made it a double for the town by winning the Social Media Award, while Helen & Douglas House won The Oxford Times Charity & Community Award. The Innovation Award went to Williams Advanced Engineering, of Grove, for developing Formula 1 technology for use in buses and trams, while Polythene UK took the Energy & Environment Award for its renewable-energy-powered new sales office in Witney.


Oxfordshire County Council Energy & Environment Award: Polythene UK, Witney. Runners up: Nicholson’s Nurseries, North Aston; Mapledurham Estates.
Bottle PR Best Use of Social Media Award: Mark Making, Chipping Norton. Runners up: Special Effect, Charlbury; SEO Optimise, Oxford.
The Oxford Times Charity and Community Award: Helen and Douglas House, Oxford. Runners up: Donnington Doorstep, Oxford; See Saw, Headington.
Oxford Brookes University Innovation Award: Williams Advanced Engineering, Grove. Runners up: Earth Save Products, Long Wittenham, and Williams Advanced Engineering, Grove.
Four Pillars Cultural Events and Tourism Award: Thame Food Festival. Runners up: Mill & Old Swan, Minster Lovell; Ian Nolan Events, Oxford.
Heart Marketing Excellence Award: Perfectly Picked, Henley. Runners up: Lake Creative, Charlbury; Electrocomponents, Oxford.
Hays Customer Care Award: Miele, Abingdon.
Runners up: Conversis Global, Oxford; British Gas Business, Oxford.
Carter Jonas Export Award: Owen Mumford, Woodstock and Chipping Norton. Runners up: Meech, Witney; Flightline, Standlake.
LEP New Business Award: Raw Talent Academy, Watlington. Runners up: QODA, Faringdon; Building Supplies Online, Banbury
Milton Park Small Business Award: Ridgeway, Witney. Runners up: Allen Associates, Cowley; Cotswold Woollen Weavers, Filkins.
NatWest Large Business Award: Oxford Products, Witney. Runners up: Owen Mumford, Woodstock; Hawkins Group, Banbury.
Blue Law by Darbys Employer of the Year Award: Norbar, Banbury. Runners up: Numerical Algorithms Group, Oxford; STL Communications, Witney.
Shaw Gibbs Young Business Person of the Year: Mike Hawkins, Hawkins Group, Banbury. Runners up: Neil O’Regan, Shaw City, Watchfield; Alan Freinkel, Startraq, Banbury.
Shaw Gibbs Business Person of the Year: Karl Durham, International Applications, Banbury. Runners up: Graham Shelton, Oxford Pharmagenesis, Oxford; Neil Brodie, Norbar, Banbury.