England VA of the Year 2016

England VA of the Year 2016

A Virtual Assistant that is breaking records …

The UK VA Awards for 2016 have seen a new record created that may never be beaten.

We are delighted to announce that Gwen Backhouse of Curlew Secretarial Solutions, based in Cumbria, has been named the England VA of the Year 2016.

The presentations have been completed at the Going Global LIVE Theatre at the UK’s largest event of it’s type with 25,000 visitors, The Business Show, Olympia, London.

Pictured above: Amanda Johnson and Gwen Backhouse of Curlew Secretarial Solutions – England VA of the Year 2016.

Just 12 months after taking the title of the UK’s Best Newcomer VA in 2015, Gwen Backhouse of Curlew Secretarial Solutions has now scooped the England VA of the Year 2016 at Going Global LIVE part of the UK’s largest business event, The Business Show in Olympia, London.

And that’s not the full success story for this year!

Gwen also secured the 2016 title of North West England VA of the Year in June, on the way to be a Finalist for the England VA of the Year Award.

The UK VA Awards are celebrating their 10th Anniversary next year at Office* Show 2017 – and in that time no-one has ever gone on to win VA of the Year after being crowned Best Newcomer VA, let alone completing that achievement within 12 months.

Chair of the Panel of Judges, John Palmer of BeMyVA.com said “this really is an amazing achievement that has set a new record and benchmark that will be difficult to better. With Gwen’s winning of the 2016 Regional North West VA Award, this means Gwen is yet to be defeated in the categories that she has entered. At the latest Award presentations we have now began to politely joke about considering banning her from future VA Award categories!”

Gwen’s latest VA Award automatically places her in the Grand Final for Outstanding VA next March at Office* Show 2017 (Olympia, London), where she will be pitching her business against previous VA Award winners from all of the UK, as part of the 10th Anniversary celebrations for 2017 of the UK VA Conference and UK VA Awards.

In a category with outstanding applicants, Runner-Ups to Gwen, in alphabetical order are:
Donna RedshawDiamond PA Services Ltd., Wiltshire (England South VA of the Year 2016)
Kelly CairnsKC Virtual Solutions, Tyne & Wear, (England North East VA of the Year 2016)
Wendy NormanLiveLink Resource Ltd., Norfolk (England Midlands VA of the Year 2016)

Pictured (left to right):

Kelly Cairns, Gwen Backhouse and Donna Redshaw

Wendy Norman was unable to attend the event on the day.


Amanda Johnson with Donna Redshaw     Amanda Johnson with Kelly Cairns

About The Author


WORKSMARTPA – NEW IDEAS, NEW FRONTIERS The year 2021 sees our business celebrate 21 years of pa-assist.com - a community supporting office professionals since our very first newsletter way back in May 2000. As we look forward to greet a new world of change beyond the pandemic, we are extremely excited to announce a new brand; a new look; and some new directions for our much loved, long-standing pa-assist.com web site and communities to explore. It is time for change. To better reflect now what we do best for you, we have a new brand, web site and activities – a new name and web site that will be full of new ideas for a new business age and new working trends as we all seek to grow, expand and explore new frontiers.

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