NOW is the time to consider applying for the INSPIRE14 Business Awards.

Although the gala awards ceremony is set to take place at Highfield Park, Heckfield, near Hook, on November 13, the closing date for nominations is August 15.

Yet again one of this year’s supporters is Hampshire building firm Wilding Butler, sponsoring the Business of the Year category – one of 13 awards on offer.

Managing director Phil Wilding is also chairman of the INSPIRE Business Awards steering group.

Ever enthusiastic about the awards and the Business of the Year Award, which his company has sponsored since the awards began, Phil has some sound advice for INSPIRE14 contenders.

He said: “The awards are open to every organisation within Basingstoke and north Hampshire whatever their size and nature.

“It is important that organisations entering the awards choose the category or categories that they are going enter carefully.

“They should read and consider their answers to the specific criteria that are required for their chosen category.

“One of the criteria for the Business of the Year award is that the organisation should be a standard bearer for success in Basingstoke and north Hampshire.

“Our previous winners have all succeeded in demonstrating how they fulfilled this requirement.

“Last year’s winner, Temporary Cover from Fleet, demonstrated to the judges that they were outstanding in all areas of their business and were fully entitled to the accolade of Business of the Year.”

Phil is looking forward to attending Highfield Park at his year’s gala dinner.

He said: “Inspire has been held in several locations in Basingstoke since the inception of the awards and this year it was decided to move slightly further afield.

“The decision to move to the De Vere Venues Highfield Park was an easy one.

“It is a beautiful parkland setting and I’m convinced it will make a memorable venue in a position that is accessible from all parts of Basingstoke and north Hampshire.”

Reflecting on the great success of the Inspire Business Awards with some satisfaction, he said: “Every year the awards get better and better.

“Last year the competition was extremely fierce and I’m sure this year will be no different. “It’s also a great evening out and this is demonstrated by the fact that the number of people attending increases year on year with over 600 attending in 2013.

“It’s something that Wilding Butler are delighted to support. The whole event reflects how I would like my company to be seen – professional, friendly and with the utmost integrity.”