11 Nov 2004

Workshops in Ballymena and Derry Scoop Top Prizes in Garage Trader Awards

Workshops in Ballymena and Derry Scoop Top Prizes in Garage Trader Awards

Donnelly and Taggart Toyota Garage in Londonderry and GMW Autocentre based in Ballymena today (Thursday 11th November 2004) scooped the top prizes in the Garage Trader Awards 2004 sponsored by Maxol Lubricants.

The awards, which are run by Garage Trader Magazine and were presented for the first time at the annual RMI gala dinner at the Culloden Hotel, Belfast, recognise and reward best practice within two distinct competition categories - franchised dealerships and independent garages.

Donnelly and Taggart won first prize in the Franchise Workshop of the Year category and GMW Autocentre scooped the award for Independent Workshop of the Year. Both companies were presented with an award on the evening and won a company day to enjoy the Rally Experience at Superdrive Motorsports Centre.

Speaking at the awards, editor of Garage Trader Magazine, Emma Cowan said: "This year the standard of entries was extremely high and all finalists were excellent examples of best practice within the trade. The competition for the category winners was particularly close, but in the end our two winners distanced themselves from the others in terms of marketing and customer focus."

Brian Donaldson, General Manager, Marketing and Retail of the Maxol Group, said: "The Garage Trader Awards represent a rare and golden opportunity to showcase best practice and the genuinely high standards of workmanship and customer service that can be found within the industry. Each winner tonight has proved not only that their working methods and environmental management practices are first class but that they are strongly customer focused and have a true commitment to staff care, training and development."

The Garage Trader Awards, now in their seventh year, actively promote excellence within the garage service and repair industry and each year the awards rotate between workshops and bodyshops.

The judging panel consisted of Noel Smyth, Regional manager for the Retail Motor Industry Federation in Northern Ireland, George Fulton formerly of the Royal Automobile Club in Northern Ireland, Eddie Burns, Manager of the Automobile Association and Emma Cowan, Editor of Garage Trader Awards.
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