THE head of a large North Yorkshire car dealership has been voted chief executive of the year by the UK motor industry.

Mark Robinson is managing director and founder at Knaresborough-based Vantage Motor Group which runs the Vantage Toyota dealerships in Clifton Moor and Knaresborough.

He was awarded the title by an independent panel of judges at the Motor Trader awards which celebrates the best in the UK car industry.

The judges highlighted Mr Robinson's focus on customer service and praised his commitment to growing the company, which now includes four dealerships across Yorkshire.

Mr Robinson said: “It is a great honour to be named CEO of the year by my peers in the automotive industry.

"Over the last 12 months there has been a real focus on doing things differently and growing the business - delivering a high level of service for customers and putting their needs at the core of everything we do."

Mr Robinson founded the 400-strong Vantage Motor Group in 2003 with the purchase of two Toyota dealerships in North Yorkshire.

Further acquisitions followed and in 2013 acquired three Toyota centres in Birmingham, Tamworth and Solihull and its first Lexus dealership in Birmingham.

Over the past year turnover has grown from £65 million to more than £200 million and the group has increased the number of sites from seven in Yorkshire and Lancashire to 18 across the north of England and the West Midlands.