A BUSINESS near York placed runner-up for the Yorkshire region at the Family Business of the Year Awards.

Johnsons of Whixley, a plant nursery business, was established in 1921 and made the final shortlist of 14 by magazine Family Business United.

The awards were held last Thursday, June 8, at the Mayfair Hotel in London, where Grimsby-based wholesale food exporter Ramsden International was awarded the top prize.

Graham Richardson, managing director, said: "We are incredibly proud to have made it so far in the competition, and were delighted to make the final shortlist, so to be named as overall runner-up is a huge achievement.

"Across three generations, family values are at the heart of everything we deliver and it is pleasing that our long-standing commitment to these values has been rewarded in this way. I’d like to congratulate Ramsden International on their worthy victory, and all of the other finalists for making the shortlist. We enjoyed a great night in wonderful company and left feeling immensely proud of all that we have achieved."

John Richardson has been the chairman of the Johnsons Group since 1964 and at the age of 79 still takes an active daily role in governance, strategy, quality and environmental systems, and health and safety.

Two of John’s sons, Andrew and Iain, are joint managing directors, alongside sibling and group managing director, Graham. His grandchildren also take active roles, with Luke a senior key account manager, Robert manager of the wholesale cash and carry unit, and Ellie an office and administration supervisor.