Manufacturing Champions Awards 2018

The shortlist for the 2018 Manufacturing Champions Awards has now been released

This year’s entries were the strongest in the five-year history of the awards, and the judging panel had an extremely hard time picking a winner. Even making the shortlist is an achievement to be proud of – this represents the very best of UK manufacturing.

The winners will be announced at a gala lunch event on Thursday 6 December at the Midland Hotel in Manchester. Join us for an afternoon of networking and celebration, with awards set to be presented in eight categories. Also new for this year is the ‘Winner of Winners’ – the standout entry from this year’s awards. This has been created in recognition of the exceptional quality of the entries, and has been picked by the Manufacturing Management editorial team.

Chris Beck
Manufacturing Management Magazine



Details about the event

On Thursday 6th December 2018, we will be hosting the Manufacturing Champions Awards at The Midland Hotel, located in the heart of Manchester's city centre. This award winning venue is just across the road from Manchester Central and only 800m away from Manchester Piccadily station.

The impressive building stands proud in the heart of Manchester's city centre, and over the course of its 100 year history, the hotel has played host to kings, queens, presidents, prime ministers and rock stars.

The ticket price includes drinks reception, 3-course lunch and half a bottle of wine per person.

There will be a cash bar in operation throughout the event for additional drinks.


Time Event
11:30 Drinks reception
12:30 Lunch
14:00 Awards ceremony commences
15:30 Final drinks
16:30 Carriages


To book your place at the award lunch, click here!

Prices quoted exclude VAT

Dress code: Business attire

Table of 10 £1,900
Large Table for 12 (very limited) £2,280
Individual seat £290


Benefits of entering


Reward your star performers on the national stage: this is an opportunity to give your high-achievers a public pat on the back and promote your business as the home of world-class talent and dynamic continuous improvement thinking.

Champion manufacturing as a rewarding career choice: help Manufacturing Management showcase the exciting and dynamic achievements of manufacturing employees and set the record straight over the opportunities on offer in UK engineering.

PR and marketing punch: awards success can offer your business a USP as a hub for outstanding achievers and the champion of award-winning standards. Winners and their achievements will be profiled in MM magazine.


Personal development: entering the awards scheme offers you the chance to benchmark against your peers. The Manufacturing Champions Awards will offer you the chance to network with like-minded individuals and exchange best-practice ideas.

Reward your team/line reports: putting a colleague forward for a category prize is a great way to recognise the contribution of an unsung hero. Making the shortlist offers a badge of honour, reinforces best practice and inspires others to follow in that individual’s footsteps.

Career development: winning an award marks you out as a unique talent. Awards can enhance your CV and trigger further recognition in the form of career development opportunities from your employer.

Inspire others: we all know manufacturing is fast paced, challenging, varied and ultimately a feel-good place to work. But the message hasn't always reached the wider British public. The Manufacturing Champions Awards will help set the record straight by highlighting the rewarding careers on offer in the sector.

Categories 2018

Click a category to view more information

How To Enter

Entries must be submitted online

Entries have now closed for the 2018 awards


The Midland Hotel Peter St Manchester M60 2DS

Tel: 0161 236 3333


How to sponsor the Awards

The Manufacturing Champions Awards are recognised as the accolade celebrating the teams and individuals that make UK manufacturing world-class.

Now in their 5th year, Champions are brought to you by the publishers of Manufacturing Management, the UK’s leading title for senior manufacturing leaders. The awards ceremony takes place on 6th December at the Midland Hotel, Manchester and will gather together UK manufacturing’s biggest names to honour their peers and celebrate their achievements.

Sponsorship benefits include:

  • Alignment with the Manufacturing Management brand
  • Pre-event print and digital promotion campaign
  • Table of 10 at the gala lunch ceremony
  • Presentation of an award on the day
  • Networking opportunity with 300 manufacturing professionals
  • Post-event marketing campaign

Please get in touch with our sponsorship team to discuss how we can help your organisation maximise its exposure by becoming identified with this prestigious awards programme.

Contact: James Slade on 01322 221144 or james.slade@markallengroup.com

Past Winners

Click on the images below to access the winner’s brochures from past events

The Manufacturing Champions awards are a fantastic way to showcase the amazing work apprentices across the country are doing within manufacturing.

Kodi Gledhill, Rising Star Winner 2017, Engineering apprentice, Coca-Cola European Partners Ltd

Winning the award validates everything we do, and it’s great to show the rest of the world that we are great at what we do.

Anika Ephraim, managing director, Elfab Ltd – 2017 SME Innovators winner

The satisfaction I got from seeing the team win the award was the biggest thing for me.

Chris King, product line manager, Knorr-Bremse, 2016 Manufacturing team of the Year winner

Entering the Manufacturing Champions awards benefits everyone – the company, the individual and the industry.

John Coughlan, director of operations, TSP Engineering – 2016 Manufacturing Leader winner


Frequently Asked questions

No. Entry is cost free.

Yes, you can enter yourself or colleagues for as many categories as you feel appropriate.

Yes, you can enter multiple employees for each category.

Yes, all categories will give a maximum word count and you should stick to these limits. However, you are encouraged to provide supplementary material as part of your entry. This could include testimonials, project plans, photos of kaizen activity — any information that will help paint a picture of you or your team's efforts to our judging team.

Yes, you can enter yourself or nominate a colleague. All entries must be endorsed by the factory manager/ops director or other senior member of the site team.

If you are having any problems with your entry or require any further support, please contact: 
Chris Beck or Julie Knox at MA Business on 01322 221144 

For sponsorship Terms & Conditions – click here.


Dr David Baglee, AMAP, Sunderland University

Dr David Baglee is a Reader in Advanced Maintenance at the University of Sunderland. David is a Visiting Professor of Operations and Maintenance at the University of Lulea, Sweden and a Visiting Research Professor at the University of Maryland USA. David’s research interests include advanced maintenance management strategies, condition-monitoring technologies and advanced manufacturing techniques and technologies to support maintenance strategy development; this includes Big Data systems, Industry 4 and the use of Virtual Reality to design new manufacturing systems. David has over 110 conference and international journal publications, 15 invited and keynote presentations and 4 book chapters. David has worked on a number of local, national and international projects.

Chris Beck, Editor, Manufacturing Management

As part of the team that has introduced the new-look Manufacturing Management, Chris is keen to position the magazine as a leading voice for UK manufacturing, championing the best industry has to offer. He brings several years of experience in a number of sectors, including manufacturing, security and housing.

Paul Bell, Managing Director, Manufacturing Excellence

Paul has a tremendous track record in transforming the performance of a wide variety of organisations both as a consultant and director. He started Manufacturing Excellence in 2000 which combines training and consultancy to help organisations drive and embed a culture of continuous improvement. Manufacturing Excellence has been phenomenally successful having saved their clients hundreds of millions of pounds with four also going on to win the UK Best Factory Award.

Matt Ellison, Site Director, Systagenix

Matt is the Site Director for the Systagenix AWT Manufacturing facility, has P&L responsibility and accountability for flawless delivery of the build plan. Matt has over 20 years of experience in the Medical Devices and Pharmaceutical industries across R&D, Validation, Quality Management and Manufacturing Operations. His responsibility currently spans in-house Manufacturing and Sterilisation, Maintenance, Health, Safety and the Environment, Occupational Health and Contract Manufacturing (CMO). Matt has also led a cultural programme to drive organisational agility and responsiveness. Prior to the integration into Acelity and his current role in 2014, Matt's previous industrial experience includes Ethicon, Johnson & Johnson Wound Management and GlaxoSmithKline. Matt has a BSc honours degree in Chemistry from the University of Central Lancashire and an MBA from Hull University, U.K. and is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt and Lean Greenbelt.

Jon Evans, Head Of Operations, BAE Systems

Jon’s role at BAE Systems’ Samlesbury site, near Preston, is to ensure the on-time delivery of the aft, vertical and horizontal tails of the F-35 Lightning II fighter jet. The site is challenged with producing one aircraft per day in two years’ time – in effect, halving the cost and quadrupling the rate of production.

Charles Garfit, Membership Engagement Director, EEF

Charles is responsible for the engagement, development and growth of EEF’s membership base. He leads EEF’s membership team across our regional network delivering a wide range of expertise from policy and representation to business support, helping manufacturers to compete, innovate and grow. Charles joined EEF from Santander where as head of Manufacturing, he played a key part in formulating Santander’s Manufacturing sector strategy substantially growing Santander’s exposure and profile. Prior to this he ran a pan-European SME business. He has also held a successful career in asset consultancy where he advised manufacturers and financial institutions across Europe and the Nordics on asset value, management and sales.

Emma Harbottle, Operations Director, Analox

Emma has been at Analox since 2006, and is in charge of the management of all operational functions and staff including manufacturing, purchasing, stock and repairs. Under Emma’s tenure, Analox has won Best Factory Awards for operational excellence. Analox specialise in the manufacture of a range of gas detection solutions.

Jeff Hope, Head Of Manufacturing, AkzoNobel

Jeff is local to Ashington and currently lives just a few miles north of Ashington, next to Druridge Bay. Jeff joined AkzoNobel in January 2013 and was appointed as Head of Manufacturing for the Ashington site, taking the opportunity to build a brand new site from bottom up; new technology, new processes, new people and the opportunity to be part of building a unique, inspiring and colourful community. In parallel to this, he was also the Site Manager for the Hammerite site in Prudhoe until early 2014. Before joining AkzoNobel, Jeff was a Plant Manager for Rio Tinto Alcan at the Aluminium Smelter in Lynemouth, Northumberland where he worked for twelve years. Prior to that, Jeff was a Navigator on marine exploration vessels for six years.

Chris King, Operations Manager, Praxair

Chris King is an Operations Manager at Praxair Surface Technologies Ltd. Chris began working in the manufacturing sector in 2006 as an apprentice, undertaking an advanced apprenticeship in Mechanical Manufacture Engineering, Chris then progressed down the leadership route gaining his BA Hons in Business Management and Communications at Oxford Brookes University. Chris has a strong knowledge of lean manufacturing and has enjoyed success on numerous projects notably winning the Manufacturing Champions Team Award with Knorr-Bremse Rail Systems (UK) in 2016, through his career so far Chris has developed a strong track record of delivering performance and enhancing employee engagement through the strategic development of processes and people. His passion for lean manufacturing and the principles within the Toyota Production System, along with his drive to create a continuous improvement culture within the business has helped improve efficiencies, aid employee development and ultimately increase business growth.

Rob Love, Site Manager, City Technology

Rob manages the award-winning Portsmouth site of City Technology, which was crowned BFA Factory of the Year in 2014. He joined City Technology in 1993 and has held numerous roles since. He started his career with Portsmouth Aviation as an apprentice in the 1980s.

Adam Offord, Deputy Editor, Plant Engineer

Adam has shown an affinity with all things industry, having worked on the editorial teams of Manufacturing Management and Machinery magazines, and more recently Plant Engineer magazine. He’s a major supporter of schemes that look to encourage young people into industry, and has led school visits to factory sites in an attempt to inspire the next generation. He is also a keen supporter of the environment and likes to champion those doing their bit to save energy and protect the planet.


Don't hesitate to get in touch with us...

Events Team



01322 221144

James Slade

Sponsorship - Sales Director


01322 221144

Chris Beck

Editorial Director


01322 221144

MA Business Ltd

Hawley Mill, Hawley Road, Dartford, Kent, DA2 7TJ


01322 221144