The Mayor of Croydon is looking forward to the Croydon Business Excellence Awards, in association with Gatwick Airport, as being one of the highlights of his year as the borough's first citizen.
All proceeds from the black-tie gala dinner and charity ball, being held at the ultra-luxurious Grand Sapphire on Thursday, October 6, are going towards Councillor Wayne Trakas-Lawlor's chosen charities – Croydon Commitment, The Stanley People's Initiative and The British Home.
And the link-up with the Mayor is fitting as Councillor Trakas-Lawlor has made business, culture and the arts the themes of his year in office. As well as the awards ceremony itself, a prestigious guest list will enjoy a sparkling evening of networking and entertainment including a three-course meal with wine, a celebrity host, live music, a charity auction, dancing to a DJ until 1am and a fun photo booth.
"I am particularly grateful to the organisers White Label for offering to donate the proceeds from October's gala dinner to my charities so I am going to make a shameless plug to all those attending to please dig deep," he said.
"The reason I've chosen business, arts and culture as the theme for my year is that I passionately believe Croydon's best years are ahead of us. Our time really is now – Croydon is the place to be.
"Croydon has the most significant regeneration programme in London, if not the south-east, for 40 years and that's something to be proud of. Croydon's boom is generating employment opportunities and we also need to enable training opportunities to allow young people to fulfil their potential."
Charities which will benefit are:
Croydon Commitment: An organisation which helps businesses in the town support good causes in the community through a legacy fund, fundraising and challenge events;
Stanley People's Initiative: A group of South Norwood residents committed to restoring Stanley Halls to its former glory as a place of entertainment, community, arts, enterprise and learning;
The British Home & Hospital: A nursing home which cares for adults with severe disabilities and complex medical issues.
As well as Gatwick Airport, the awards partners for 2016 are Allianz Global Assistance, Croydon Advertiser, Croydon Chamber of Commerce, Croydon Council, Croydon Partnership, Handelsbanken, Keltbray, Platinum business magazine, StartUp Croydon, Sussex Innovation Croydon and Wing Yip.
Tickets are priced £145 plus VAT (shortlisted companies £125 plus VAT), £1,295 plus VAT per table of 10 (shortlisted companies £1,100 plus VAT), and £1,560 plus VAT per premium table (shortlisted companies £1,265 plus VAT). To book visit www.croydonawards.co.uk/gala-dinner