Harp Renewables based in Kentstown were crowned Overall winners of the Meath Business & Tourism Awards with Justice Minister Helen McEntee TD presenting the award to Shane Finnegan.

Harp Renewables and Johnstown Estate crowned overall winners at 2023 Meath Business & Tourism Awards

The 14th Meath Business & Tourism Awards took place at Knightsbrook Hotel las night (17th November) with Harp Renewables based in Kentstown and Johnstown Estate Hotel and Spa in Enfield picking up the coveted overall titles

Held in partnership between Meath Chronicle with Meath Co Council and Boyne Valley Tourism the MBTAs are the highlight of the business social calendar with 31 entrepreneurs, firms and organisations in the running for awards.

The event was hosted by broadcaster Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh who hails from Rathcairn with special guests Cllr Tommy Reilly, Cathaoirleach of Meath Co Council and Minister for Justice Helen McEntee.

Harp Renewables is a waste to energy company, specialising in aerobic and anaerobic digestion systems, savings consumers money on disposal costs.

Founder, Shane Finnegan said he was "stunned" to be receiving the accolade.

Employing 42 dedicated staff members, Shane says the plans are for growth until Q4 2024. "Our core mission is manufacturing food waste digesters, addressing the critical issue of food waste mismanagement that can lead to environmental problems. Instead, we transform food waste into a valuable resource, mitigating its negative impact. With approximately 250 machines worldwide, we’re successfully diverting an impressive volume of food waste and contributing to a more sustainable future."

Accepting the Overall Tourism award Cassandra Conway, said she was "shocked but delighted" and dedicated the win to the hard working staff at Johnstown Estate.

"They have weathered the challenges of the past year, adapting to ever-changing circumstances and ensuring that safety and guest satisfaction remains their top priority. Their resilience and unwavering commitment to excellence are a testament to their professionalism and dedication."

Opening proceedings, Meath Chronicle editor, Gavan Becton said the awards were a looking glass into "how we are doing as a county and more importantly how we are doing as a community."

"It's a wonderfully positive picture. Our nominated businesses are not just balance sheets and budgets, they are family run, customer-focused enterprises running 24/7 on the dreams and imaginations of energetic entrepreneurs and disruptors."

Congratulating all the nominees he said the Meath Chronicle was "delighted to spearhead these awards and share your journeys with a wide and appreciative audience that give an insight into the risks, the skills, the smarts and the dedication it takes in running successful businesses in 2023."

"Companies across Meath continue to show remarkable agility, adaptability and courage in developing and expanding their businesses. The business leaders and entrepreneurs who put themselves forward for an MBTA are already winners, trailblazers and local heroes. These awards allow us to recognise all that they have done to date and are still striving to achieve."

Becton also paid tribute to the partners and sponsors of the awards, many of whom have been there from year one "and whom without, these awards would simply not happen."

“Alongside our partners, Meath Co Council and Boyne Valley Tourism - which has just celebrated 30 years promoting our region across the globe - I want to say a big thank you to eCOMM, Alltech, Sheridan Insurances, Dunboyne College of Further Education and AIB Navan and Knightsbrook Hotel, your continued support and enthusiasm is very much appreciated.”

Both Minister Helen McEntee and Cllr Tommy Reilly heaped praise on the nominated businesses and winners describing their efforts as the backbone of the economy in Meath that makes it the thriving county it is.

And The Winners Are....

Best Family Business:

Harp Renewables / Topline Murtaghs / Brogans Butchers / The Headfort Arms

Sponsored by Alltech

LEO Award

Cuddles Creche / Kells Gin / The Bunnery /

Sponsored by Meath County Council – Local Enterprise Office

Emerging New Business

Elmgrove Farm Flowers / Last Fence / Little Sicily

Sponsored by AIB

Not for Profit

Claremont Stadium / Wilkinstown Community Centre / Clann Mor

Sponsored by Sheridan Insurances

Investment in employee development and training

DBASS / L’Avenue Hair and Beauty / The Zone

Sponsored by Dunboyne College of Further Education

The Digital Trailblazer

The Central / VRXAD / Bellinter House

Sponsored by eComm

Best Customer Experience

Saraden Designs / Johnstown Estate Hotel / Abelle Bridal

Sponsored by Meath Chronicle

Best Small Tourism Business

James Griffin / Newbarn Farm / Zatino Travel / Bective Tea Rooms

Sponsored by Boyne Valley Tourism

Best Tourism Experience

Boyne Boats / Emerald Park / Navan Adventure Centre / Hot Box Sauna

Also sponsored by Boyne Valley Tourism