We encourage Sandwell businesses to apply for the Queen’s Awards

Put your Black Country business forward for a Queen’s Award for Enterprise

KMB Shipping, the Tipton-based company of Sandwell Business Ambassador Paul Hull, was a winner in the international trade category at the 2021 Queen’s Awards. KMB was one of 205 organisations nationally to be recognised with this most prestigious of business awards, and the only one in the Black Country. 

Go for it

Left to right: Kevin Jones, Paul Hull and Jamie Warren – owners of KMB Shipping

Paul encourages other Black Country businesses to put themselves in the running for the Queen’s Awards.

He said: “Sometimes we don’t shout loud enough about the talent and innovation present in our region – it’s time to put modesty aside and go for it.”

To give your business a head start, we’ve put together this page of resources with help from Sandwell Business Ambassador John Wood.

John is a Deputy Lieutenant for the West Midlands, which means he has been appointed as a deputy by the Lord Lieutenant, who is the Queen’s personal representative in our region.

About the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise

Judged to demanding standards, the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious business prizes around. They are given each year for outstanding achievement by UK businesses in the categories of innovation, international trade, sustainable development and promoting opportunity through social mobility. A Queen’s Award is valid for five years.

Even in times of relative stability and normality, winning a Queen’s Award can be transformative for a company. As we emerge from the coronavirus pandemic, securing such a prize could be more valuable than ever for your West Midlands firm.

Take a look at the Queen’s Awards official blog for  further inspiration.

The awards are presented at your company by a Lord Lieutenant, one of the Queen’s representatives. They have permission to fly the Queen’s Awards flag at their main offices, and use the official emblem on their marketing materials.

If your business wins a Queen’s Award you will also receive a Grant of Appointment (an official certificate) and a commemorative crystal trophy, as well as benefiting from press coverage and great kudos from customers and suppliers.

The Queen’s Awards are free to enter and you can apply for more than one award. The application window for the 2023 awards opened on Sunday 1 May 2022 and is open until midday on Tuesday 6 September.

With bank holidays coming and inevitable summer holiday disruptions, it’s never too soon to start thinking about your entry.


To be eligible to apply your organisation must be based in the UK. You only need to have a minimum of two full-time UK employees or part-time equivalents. You must file your company tax returns with HMRC and demonstrate strong corporate social responsibility. Your company can be a business or non-profit organisation.

Each of the four award categories has additional entry criteria. To find out more visit the official website. You can contact the Queen’s Awards Helpline on 020 7215 6880 from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

How to apply

Top tips

John said, “It is best that the applications are completed by someone in your company who knows the business intimately and can express themselves with passion and enthusiasm that will be obvious to the assessor.” He also shared five top tips with us for compiling a winning entry. They are:

1. Be prepared to put time, effort and careful planning into your application.
2. Understand your business and its markets – use existing information such as mission statements and budgets.
3. Apply a VIVA approach: vision, innovation, values, achievements.
4. Be clear, concise and accurate in your application. Be passionate but back up your claims with evidence.
5. Have someone external to the process check your submission.

Further support

For additional support with your application, contact the West Midlands Lieutenancy office.

You can also get consultant’s support with your Queen’s Award application, for a fee. The below are organisations which offer that service and we share them with no recommendation as to whether or not you should use them:

Dr Denise Taylor
Wylde Connections
01926 754061

Mr Chris Robinson
Boost Awards
01273 258703

See also:

The Queen’s Awards for Voluntary Service – the highest award given to volunteer groups across the UK.

This page was last updated in May 2022. 


The Ambassadors are a collective of business people in the Sandwell area with the aim of supporting the Sandwell Business Community.

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