A NIGHT of great excitement and glamour took place recently, when the Arboretum garden centre in Leighlinbrige hosted its fourth annual staff awards night.
More than 100 staff members were invited to Mount Wolseley Hotel in Tullow for a night of celebration and recognition hosted by the Doyle family, who run the popular centres.
The garden centres in Leighlinbridge and Kilquade, Co Wicklow were founded in 1977 by horticulturist Rachel Doyle. She’s now the executive chairperson of the company, with her sons Fergal as chief commercial officer and Barry as chief executive officer.
The keynote speaker at the awards ceremony was well-known GAA hurling personality Davy Fitzgerald, who spoke with passion about the importance of doing something you love.
“Davy doesn’t really do keynote speeches,” joked Fergal, “but he met Rachel recently and was quite taken with her, so when we asked him to do it, he said he couldn’t say no, that he’d do anything for her. He was absolutely fantastic and his speech was inspirational.”
The awards cover staff at both the Leighlinbridge centre and the company’s second shop at the National Garden Exhibition Centre in Kilquade. The winners, who are chosen by staff rather than by management, were – Employee of the year, Mark Dillon (ecommerce and IT manager, based in Carlow); Outstanding service award, Luiza Blazejewska; Outstanding customer service, Carlow, Martina Lawlor; Outstanding customer service, Kilquade, Annemarie Cunningham; Best team player, Carlow, Carol Langton; Best team player, Kilquade, Craig McGrath; New employee of the year, Carlow, Eric Corcoran; New employee of the year, Kilquade, Ann Marie McDyer.