Bradford Garden Centre hosts team awards evening

A Bradford garden centre hosted an evening of celebrations in recognition of its team’s performance recently.

180 of the 240 strong work force at Tong Garden Centre attended a dinner and disco at The Hilton Hotel in Leeds where a number of the team were given awards.

Organised by Tong’s People and Culture team, the event was their second annual awards evening, after a break last year due to Covid. The annual event is designed to celebrate the values and behaviours that underpin the Tong Lane business.

Throughout 2021, staff at Tong voted for their colleagues to be recognised as monthly Values Award Winners in the six categories of Team, Excellence, Honest, Responsible, Accountable and Positive. The management team then selected the six overall champions from the 12 monthly winners.

Each of the six main awards recognised team members’ commitment to championing the values that are at the heart of the business. The awards were presented by Tong’s co-owner, Tom Megginson, Chairman, David Stanhope and Finance Director, Charlie Barker. The winners were:

Terrance Waterhouse from the Mezzanine Kitchen was voted the ‘Team’ values champion for showing support to colleagues in his own and other teams.

Leigh Quinn from Marketing was voted the ‘Excellence’ values champion for only settling for GREAT!

Kirsty Blake from Grass Hoppers was voted the ‘Honest’ values champion for being consistent and reliable.

Edwina Whitwam from Giftware was voted the ‘Respectful’ values champion for being respectful, courteous and considerate towards everyone and everything.

James Tolson from Garden Sundries was voted the ‘Accountable’ values champion for taking ownership in difficult situations and always taking pride in his work.

Jane Day from Indoor Plants and Gift was voted the ‘Positive’ values champion for being great to work with and always finding a way to get the job done, even in trying circumstances. 

Tong’s Head of People and Culture, Neil Barwise-Carr said: “We had such a great evening celebrating the business’s performance over the last year and rewarding everyone in our team for making that success possible: the buzz in the room was electric.

“As we grow and look to open a new site later this year, embedding a culture built on our values becomes even more important and we’re proud to recognise and reward the team’s outstanding contribution. Congratulations to our fantastic Values Awards winners for helping to make Tong a great place to work.” 

Tong Garden Centre occupies a 19-acre site in Tong village. It is one of Yorkshire’s biggest independent garden centres with 125,000 square feet of retail space and parking for up to 700 cars.