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Industry can be proud of its success

Caroline Nodder

This week at the Drapers Fashion Awards we enjoyed the rare opportunity to bring the sector together to celebrate our worthy winners and also pay tribute to our vibrant and unique industry.

This week at the Drapers Fashion Awards we enjoyed the rare opportunity to bring the sector together to celebrate our worthy winners and also pay tribute to our vibrant and unique industry.

As I said on the night to more than 1,000 of the industry’s finest, too often the fashion business is overlooked when in fact it makes a huge contribution to the UK, as an employer, a tax payer and as a beacon for British creativity.

The awards are one chance for us all to feel proud of the fashion sector’s achievements, and looking down the list of winners it is clear that, despite the tough trading climate, there are still many success stories out there in our industry.

The awards are about instilling a sense of pride in our finalists and their teams that spurs them on to even greater things and are not just about one evening of celebration. I hope the finalists share that pride with their customers. Shoppers like to know they are supporting an award-winning business and winning a Drapers Fashion Award, or even being shortlisted, should be good for your business and staff morale.

It was also an honour for me to present two special awards on the night. The Outstanding Contribution to Fashion award went to fashion journalist Hilary Alexander, who has been a constant presence on the fashion scene for almost three decades. In her former role as fashion director for the Daily Telegraph she was a champion of up-and-coming designers and the high street.

Our ultimate accolade this year – the Drapers Lifetime Achievement Award – went to ex-Debenhams chief executive Rob Templeman. I can think of few more deserving or more gracious recipients of this award, and the standing ovation he received spoke volumes. 

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