People behind the scenes play a starring role in staging gala event

STARS ON STAGE Eamonn Holmes was the host of last year’s gala award ceremony

the Times Business Awards not only showcases local companies and entrepreneurs every year, but also draws on the services of the business community to stage the event.

Behind the scenes, two of the Tunbridge Wells-based business people getting ready for the gala event on March 30 are international photographer David Bartholomew and the team at Mint DJs.

David Bartholomew was ‘born and bred’ in Tunbridge Wells and has an office in The Pantiles, but although he regularly travels to the US for work, his photography is truly rooted in the area, not just commercially but historically.

As the founder of the Tunbridge Wells Project, he has been photographing and collecting an archive of the town through its many changes since 2010 – a project prompted by proposed changes to the civic complex.

“I’ve been recording the buildings over the years. It’s a snapshot in time, of what the town was like in the early 21st century,” David told the Times.

He documents the people, too.

“I was born and bred here, and I enjoy being [in the community], meeting people,” he said.

“I have got to know people and it is good to be a part of it.”

That has involved working at every Times Business Awards since the event began in 2016, and he will be there again this March 30, mingling with the guests at the reception and gala dinner, and officially photographing the Awards presentation.

“I’m looking forward to it,” he said, revealing that his favourite Awards photo comes from last year – an image of the celebrity host, television presenter Eamonn Holmes pointing and smiling during his speech (shown above).

“It typified that engagement during the evening,” said David. “Everyone is pulling together.”

Meanwhile, Mint DJs’ focus for the evening is getting people up and on to the dance floor.

The company’s Managing Director Tim Cullen, also Tunbridge Wells born and bred, said the local area had been a great place for his business to operate for nearly 14 years.

“We do cover [all of] the South East, but nearly all of our work is in this area,” he said.

“Probably the biggest part of our business is weddings, but we do a lot of corporate events, birthdays and club nights.

“And Christmas was back with a bang in terms of business entertaining,” he added.

Having provided music, lighting and audiovisual services for the past few Times Business Awards, Tim said: “We’re really looking forward to playing for a load of great local businesses.

“I would just say that a lot of people like to dance in the area. There’s a really nice vibe in the town.

“And when you have a cross-section of people and a cross-section of ages and backgrounds, it’s good to mix it up.

“That’s what we’re going to do.”

Look out for the shortlisted individuals and organisations in next week’s Times (March 15).

Share this article

Recommended articles


Please enter a search term below.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter