Compass and Elior lauded at 10th Contract Catering Awards

Compass Group and Elior were the two big winners as the 10th edition of the Contract Catering Awards was finally held the Leonardo Royal Hotel at London Tower Bridge last night. Having come into the night tied on nine nominations each, the pair left with an impressive five awards apiece.

One of the main themes that emerged during the evening was the huge role that hospitality and foodservice has played in helping the country through the pandemic that has dominated the last two years.

One such example was Levy UK+I scoring the big one of Contract Caterer of the Year. The judges were clearly impressed by the leading role that Compass’s sporting subsidiary played in getting live events up and running again, having hosted pilot events at The Kia Oval in June 2020, followed by the first Premier League games with reduced crowds at Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea in November 2020.

Similarly, the impressive Morag Freathy took home Senior Executive of the Year for her work overseeing Eurest and 14forty. Her leadership ensured that sites such as National Grid, Royal Mail and Amazon remained open and running throughout the pandemic.

Appropriately, new for this year was the Healthcare Award, which was won by Karen Ford-Sneddon from Sodexo. A category filled with worthy winners if ever there was one, she prevailed for her incredible work managing the patient dining service at Queen’s Hospital in Romford.

The night was rounded off, as ever, with the Lifetime Achievement Award and the fifth of Elior’s successes. The award went to the popular Julia Edmonds, who joined Lexington’s executive team in 2007 as sales and marketing director, becoming managing director in 2011. She was promoted into the role of corporate business development director at Elior in January of this year, while impressively remaining non-executive chair for Lexington.

The night was hosted for the 10th time by Mark Durden-Smith, who was raring to go, having not been let off the leash since the event was last held in November 2019. There was one sombre moment, however, when the event paused to remember Charles Campion, who co-hosted the event many times over the years but sadly passed away in December 2020. He was much missed at the event and is across the industry.

Contract Catering editor Henry Norman said: “It has been way too long and it was amazing to have everyone back together at last for another night of celebration. A huge congratulations to all of our truly talented winners and nominees.

“I would also like to thank our events team, expert judges and kind sponsors, as well as the chefs and staff at the Leonardo for the delicious feast they laid on. We wouldn’t have been able to do it without any of you.

“I think I speak on behalf of all at H2O Publishing when I say we can’t wait to do it all again. And we promise not to leave it so long next time!”

The event was sponsored by AB World Foods, Ajinomoto, Bewley’s, Britvic, Civica, E-foods, Filta, Invisible Chef, Iris Education, Kepak, Mr Lee’s Noodles, Nestle Professional, Unox, Restaurant Design Associates and Young’s. For more information, go to

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