The Founders’ Award is unique among the categories at the RBAs. It only exists at a national level, and rather than being judged by our panel of rural and business experts, the winner is chosen by Anna Price and Jemma Clifford, the founders of the Rural Business Awards.
Anna and Jemma look holistically at all the national finalists, looking for innovative businesses who have a significant impact on their communities, environments, and the rural way of life. The winner will demonstrate strong entrepreneurial skills.
The Founders’ Award is presented at the end of the National Final of the Rural Business Awards, and is one of the highlights of the ceremony.
The first Founders’ Award was presented in the 2018/19 awards year, to Adventure Parc Snowdonia.
Winner Case Study: Adventure Parc Snowdonia
“When choosing the recipient of the Founders’ Award, we looked for businesses who were incredibly successful in their own fields, but who also went above and beyond running the business to make a profit, to make a difference in their local areas.
“All the businesses participating in the national final were great contenders, which made the decision really difficult. We hope you agree that our ultimate choice, Adventure Parc Snowdonia, is a worthy winner.”
Opened in the summer of 2015, Adventure Parc Snowdonia centres around a world-first inland surf lagoon, offering the longest ever man-generated waves. The waves roll at 90-second intervals, and there are dedicated sections for beginner, intermediate and advanced surfers. It also offers an aquatic obstacle course, indoor soft play, glamping pods, and a bar and restaurant.
Adventure Parc Snowdonia is now one of Wales’ most popular visitor attractions – since opening, the attraction has received more than 400,000 visitors.
This business won the Founders’ Award due to its world-class innovation, commitment to accessibility and green credentials. Adventure Parc Snowdonia’s support of the local community is also impressive, through its significant role as an employer, but equally its programmes for local children and young people.
“We are honoured to have been given The Founders’ Award, alongside recognition in the Best Rural Recreational or Outdoor Pursuits Business category. We are so pleased that the founders of the RBAs saw something unique in Adventure Parc Snowdonia. Our innovative inland surf lagoon brings thousands of visitors each year to this remote part of Wales, and are passionate about introducing people to the thrill of surfing, no matter their age or ability.
We are proud of the work we have undertaken to make our rural part of Wales accessible for all, while also transforming a former industrial site with the greatest care for the environment. We are excited to be expanding our business in the coming year, and can’t wait to see what the future holds.”
With only a couple of weeks left until entries officially close, we’re going to take a look at how to put together an entry worthy of a Rural Business Award.
We’re really proud of our judging process. It’s fair, it’s transparent, and it recognises that the best businesses aren’t always the biggest. We’re so proud of it, in fact, we’ll take any opportunity to shout from the rooftops about how great it is, including today’s blog.
One of the most frustrating things for us is when great businesses don’t translate to great entries. To help you on your way to winning, we’ve compiled a list of the five most common (and easily avoidable) mistakes past entrants have made.