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Celebrate Success Regional Finals

On Wednesday, we were invited to the Celebrate Success Regional Finals at The Derby Roundhouse. We had been put forward for a NatWest Enterprise Award, The award recognises those young people who have overcome serious difficulties in order to achieve success in creating a sustainable business or social enterprise.

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On the Wednesday morning we arranged to have our makeup done by the beautiful and very talented Sophie Downing. We took it in turns to have our makeup done & the nerves were building. We showed Sophie what we wanted & she set to work to make us look perfect. She talked us through our make up looks and taught us all about applying make up at home too, if you are looking for anyone to do your make up for a special event or wedding we would highly recommend Sophie. A Princes Trust supported business too, we do like to keep things in the Princes Trust family!

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We arrived at the awards at 2pm and were greeted by a member of the Prince’s Trust team who escorted us to The Roundhouse where the award ceremony was being held. We where blown away by the sheer scale of the building, a perfect setting for the days events. There were stalls situated around the edge of the room from various businesses backed by this amazing charity. Among the stalls was Gill from Elysian Cakes, Paul Ace, a vintage singer, a bespoke jewellery business and a fashion stall.

We were among the first of the award nominees to arrive, punctual as always! This didn’t help with nerves at all but it meant we had time to chat to everyone arriving and the time take some all important selfies!

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Then slowly, the other nominees, guests and awards presenters started to arrive and this really helped to calm us as we already knew each other from various Prince’s Trust events. Not only were there familiar faces but there were also business mentors including Katie’s very own mentor David, HSBC mangers, Natwest representatives, Derby City Council and representatives from TK Maxx and Homesense. There were lots of Princes Trust staff in attendance , members of local press, the Princes Trust media team, photographers and The Derby Enterprise Princes Trust team who had helped Katie with her original business plan for House of Oliver. All in all there were around 300 people at the event.

We had a couple of hours of networking and then we had a media chat with The Princes Trust team about what it felt like to be a finalist, had lots of pictures with other finalists and other ambassadors and in front of the sponsor boards. Katie somehow also ended up with quite a few Princes Trust badges from the Ambassador team!

We had cake and some refreshments and then it was time to take our seats. We were all able to sit together which was nice and also by complete accident sat next to another Ilkeston team who were also finalists in another category.


The awards started with a video link from HRH The Prince of Wales talking about the fantastic work The Princes Trust does and congratulating the finalists for getting to this stage. Speeches then followed about the work of the Princes Trust on its 40th year and some of the exceptional work that has happened in the East Midlands these last 12 months. The compere, a voiceover man from Leicester then took to the stage.

Awards were then presented for

Experian Educational Achiever of the Year
HSBC Breakthrough Award
Woodhead Group Community Impact Award
Rolls-Royce Rising Star Award

A representative from each awards sponsor came on to the stage and gave a speech about how they each work with The Princes Trust, each finalists story was read out and we all cheered, clapped and gave plenty of encouragement. An envelope was presented with the name of the winner inside…….. Queue dramatic pause and then the winner from each award was announced! The winner was invited on to the stage where they were briefly interviewed and had the opportunity to thank their supporters and key people in their success. The four awards were each handed out with the Ilkeston Team winning the Woodhead Community Impact Award, we gave extra cheers for them!

A commercial break was scheduled with The Enterprise Award being the next one to be presented…… nerves were really, really building now!


TalentMatch came and provided entertainment for the break with Bollywood singing, BeatBoxing, Poetry and a young singer all a part of the Leicester TalentMatch Programme. The entertainment was amazing and had us all clapping and waving our hands in the air supporting the 4 acts. Each act came on individually and performed in front of a prestigious audience full of executives from Princes Trust sponsors, local businesses and Princes Trust mentors and staff. We were blown away with their talent and courage at standing up and performing individually on stage to the audience. Leicester really does have talent!

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The compere returned to the stage and announced the nominees for The Natwest Enterprise Award, this was the award that Katie was shortlisted as a Regional Finalist for.

Katie and Mike were the 2 shortlisted finalists with Katie having established a successful bridal wear business providing affordable bridal wear and employing a team of staff as well as expanding into larger premises and increasing stock levels over 12 months. The other finalist Mike Moore, another Young Ambassador (along with Katie) runs a successful drumming school in Derby and has overcome many difficulties to provide bespoke services for people with autism in the Derbyshire community.

A short video was then played from Kelly Hoppen, Dragons Den congratulating both the finalists on getting to the regional finals and saying how proud she was to support the Enterprise Award having started a business from scratch herself.

Paul, from the East Midlands Natwest Business Team was then asked onto the stage and he gave a short speech on how Natwest work with The Princes Trust and also encourage young people to get into business.

Now was the moment we had been waiting for…………a Princes Trust colleague passed Paul an envelope and he announced …………….. Katie as the Winner!

The House of Oliver Team went wild and Katie was invited onto the stage to give a speech and accept her award. Mike, as the runner up was also invited up and the media team took photos from the stage. They were then escorted to be interviewed for the Princes Trust social media and the newspapers.

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Katie then rejoined the celebrations where the awards ceremony was continuing and awards for
The Workplace Depot Young Ambassador of the Year
Tk Maxx & HomeSense Young Achiever of the Year were read out and presented.

Once the awards ceremony came to a close all of the finalists and winners were invited onto the stage for a huge group photograph and more networking and media interviews took place.

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The whole afternoon and evening was really enjoyable and we were humbled to be in the presence of so many inspiring young people who had overcame difficulties to change their lives for the better.

The full list of East Midlands winners are:
Experian Education Achiever of the Year: Baseer Omarkhill
HSBC Breakthrough Award: Chloe Parker
Woodhead Group Community Impact Award: Ilkeston Team 175
Rolls Royce Rising Star Award: Milos Novak
Natwest Enterprise Award: Katie Lyth
Workplace Depot Young Ambassador of the Year: Efaz Ahmed
Tk Maxx & HomeSense Young Achiever of the Year: Tom Wright

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Each of the winners had been involved on one of the Princes Trust programmes Fairbridge, Get Started, Achieve, Team, Get Into or Enterprise. If you would like any information about any of The Princes Trust programmes, how you can support the trust or anything else please use the contact information at the end of the blog.

Once the awards were all over it was time to grab some food! The 3 of us went out in Derby to celebrate a fantastic day! Although we were all home by 8:30! (dirty stop outs!!!)

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Want to be involved in a Princes Trust programme or donate to The Princes Trust? To find out more on any of the Princes Trust programmes or stories in this blog call 02075431299 or visit

Katie would like to take this opportunity to thank her mentor David for providing a calm hour a month to help her make sense of her business, without which she would go insane! and, for nominating her for the award – without him she would never have got to even go to the awards! The Princes Trust Enterprise Team in Derby and especially to Gen for her ideas, helping her with a business plan and for not giving up on her when she had almost given up on herself, her husband, family and friends for putting up with work chat, listening to any work stresses and for allowing her to work long hours, to Luca Gallone (Princes Trust Young Ambassador) for pushing her to always be better through just being Luca and for setting her book list for the next 12 months!

Another set of thank you’s to Suki and Dewi for giving her the opportunity for her to be a Young Ambassador and represent such a fantastic charity, Harry Shepherd, the media team and Alexis for organising such a fantastic event that she will remember forever, her amazing customers over the last 12 months, and finally, to Roxy, Jade, Jess and Jessica for running with her ideas, listening to her training, inspiring her to work harder everyday so as to be able to give them the careers and experiences they want in the future and for everything they all do at House of Oliver. It is always appreciated and never goes unnoticed.

A heartfelt and complete thank you.

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