Making the Difference Awards 2021 – Winners Announced

Now in their sixth year, these awards recognise the commitment of our colleagues within our 4,000-strong workforce from across Great Britain who have gone above and beyond to deliver outstanding service and lead by example.

2021’s winners and finalists for our awards can be found below.


View the photos from 2021 here >>

Congratulations to our winner: Caroline Cameron, Cafe Manager, The Waterside Cafe, Churchill Catering

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Jasmine Carr-Daynes, Head of Kitchen, Vertas Group
  • Wendy Gurney, Head of Kitchen, Vertas Group


Colleague of the Year was sponsored by:

Our people are our primary asset in delivering service excellence – this award is designed to recognise the significant contribution that an individual has made to Vertas, its clients and customers.

Team of the Year

Congratulations to our winner: The OrbisEnergy Team

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • The Jeskyns Community Woodlands Cafe team, Churchill Catering
  • The Stables Cafe Team, Churchill Catering

Team of the Year was sponsored by:

We are looking for teams that have demonstrably gone the extra mile to improve the way they work, for example; to increase client satisfaction or deliver improved service standards.

Colleagues Champion

Congratulations to our winner: Holly Amos, Accounts Assistant

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Julia Nicoll, Cleaning Operations Manager, Vertas Derbyshire Limited
  • Steven Harryman, Payroll Advisor, Schools’ Choice


Colleagues’ Champion was sponsored by


This award recognises a Vertas employee who has consistently supported work colleagues and is always there to help others.

Lifetime Achievement

Congratulations to our winner: Linda Crossley, Head of Kitchen

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Peter Sutton, Head of Security Services, Oakpark Security
  • Shaun Swan, Head of Ground Services and Landscaping

Lifetime Achievement was sponsored by


This accolade is to recognise a member of our team who has consistently strived to develop their service area, their team and add value to the organisation in its many guises.

Congratulations to our winner: Chris Eveleigh, HSQE, Compliance Senior Risk and Quality Advisor

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Claire Wilden, Operations Manager, Churchill Catering
  • Greg Wilks, Cafe Manager, Grizedale Cafe & Gift Shop, Churchill Catering

Sustainability and Innovation was sponsored by


Sustainability is one of the Vertas group’s core values and is the right thing to do for our planet and our environment. Without innovation we will never move forward. This award recognises where sustainability or innovation has been put at the heart of our operations.

Congratulations to our winner: Karen Pardoe, Head of Educational Catering

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Bill Farley, Head of Cleaning, Vertas Group
  • Sarah Hunt, Operations Manager, Verse FM

Inspiring Leaders was sponsored by

This award recognises our Inspiring leaders who develop and motivate their teams to deliver service excellence, in their chosen specialty.

Congratulations to our winner: Lorna Mayston, Cleaning Regional Manager

Well done to our finalists:

  • Andy Palethorpe, HSQE, Compliance and Governance Advisor, Vertas Group
  • Justin Brown, HSQE, Compliance and Governance Senior Advisor, Vertas Group

Going the Extra Mile was sponsored by


This award recognises an individual who has gone above and beyond in the course of their work to provide service excellence or support to colleagues.

Congratulations to our winner: Sian Durrant, Project Manager

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Kurtis Powell, Central Support Administrator, Vertas Group
  • Peter Lockwood, Payroll Manager, Vertas Group

Specialist of the Year was sponsored by


This award seeks to reward and recognise our service specialists who innovate and develop their area of expertise for the benefit of Vertas, its clients and customers.

Congratulations to our winner: Rob Clark, Security Operations Manager, Oakpark Security

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Dale Stark, Caretaker, Vertas Derbyshire Limited
  • The OrbisEnergy Team, Vertas Group

Client Recognition was sponsored by


This new award for 2020 invites clients to nominate Vertas individual or teams to recognise the exceptional service they provide.


Congratulations to our winner: Sue Salamon, Cleaning Supervisor, Vertas Group

Huge well done to our finalists:

  • Jeffrey Cubbitt, Cleaning Operative, Vertas Group
  • Shelly Cornish, HR Operational Team Manager, Schools’ Choice

Customer 1st was sponsored by


Customers are our lifeblood. This award recognises an individual or team who have provided exceptional client or customer service over a period of time, demonstrating a ‘customer first’ culture.

Thank you to all our sponsors for their support for our Making the Difference awards. Without you, this event would not be possible.

If you would like to find out more about sponsoring our awards in 2022, contact us today.

“My congratulations go to all the 2021 winners and finalists. I’m delighted with the record number of nominations this year, demonstrating how colleagues across the group have embraced the awards, now in their sixth year.”

Ian Surtees, MBA, FIoD, Vertas Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO)