INDEPENDENT Vale appliance store, Abbey Appliances, received a surprise nomination at one of the industry's most prestigious awards ceremonies.

The store was up for the retailer of the year at this year's Electrical Manufacturing and Retailing Awards after being put forward by a regional sales representative.

Lyn Knight, director, said: "We were thrilled to have been nominated in this category. As a small business in a big industry it is hard for us to compete against larger stores but to be recognised in this way is a real boost."

Although the store did not go on to win the award, Mrs Knight still remains positive about the experience.

She added: "I think it just goes to show that hard work really does pay off. I started Abbey Appliances from my former shop, John's Spares and Service Centre, in Evesham's market 19 years ago and feel that the business has come on leaps and bounds since then.

"I am proud of what our team has achieved and this recognition from the industry is extremely humbling."

Abbey Appliances are hoping to maintain momentum following this year's awards and are already looking forward to next year's event.

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