Top award for Christchurch company
SIEMENS Metals Technologies has been presented with the Queen's Award for International Trade, the highest official UK award for British businesses. To achieve the Queen's Award for Enterprise in the category of International Trade, a company must show a substantial and sustained increase in export earnings over three consecutive 12 month periods. The award was given to the special products unit which supplies specialist measurement equipment worldwide and has achieved outstanding year on year growth. It is the second time Siemens has received the accolade – the first award was in 2006 – and it recognises the special products unit's commercial success as a result of its export activities.
The Lord Lieutenant of Dorset, Mrs Anthony Pitt-Rivers, spoke of her pleasure at returning to make the prestigious Queen's Award for a second time, commenting on the wonderful record of achievement. Making the presentation to Malcolm Jenkins, special products director, she told him that their achievements in the unit were due to loyalty and hard work, adding that she wished them continued success. Giving warm congratulations to all, Mrs Pitt-Rivers said: "I am proud that Dorset has such a thriving business community."
In his acceptance speech, Mr Jenkins spoke of the team effort which had brought about the accolade and paid tribute to the families who had made sacrifices over the years. Collecting the award was, he said, his last task for the company as it came at the start of his retirement. After 38 years in the industry – and 30 years with the same company – he was proud that Siemens had won the award twice. Wishing the business well for the future, he felt certain that success in the challenging market would continue.
Watching the presentation was the Deputy Mayor of Bournemouth Councillor Chris Rochester with the Deputy Mayoress Mrs Val Rochester and The Mayor of Christchurch Councillor Peter Hall with his escort, Councillor Mrs Lesley Dedman. Councillor Hall was delighted that such a prestigious award had gone to a company in Christchurch, especially during the year of the Queen's Jubilee celebrations. He added: "It is good to hear that the main market for export for the specialised equipment is China, to redress the balance of everything they send to us."
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Also enjoying the proceedings was the President of the Dorset Chamber of Trade and Industry Mr Michael Regenhardt who chatted to many of those who make Siemens Metals Technologies a global leader in the industry. Most of the close-knit team who make up the special products unit attended the presentation and for two of them it was the prelude to a very special evening. Representing the company, they were travelling to Buckingham Palace to meet the Queen. Paul Bowcher, engineering manager, was looking forward to the great honour of meeting Her Majesty while Paul Durrant, who works in production and is known to his colleagues as James Bond, was also really thrilled to be going. Both men, together with every employee of the special products unit were presented with an engraved Queen's Award key ring as a sign of appreciation.
Report and photos by Pat Scott