SHARMINI Thomas has got used to walking the red carpet this year - she has scooped ten awards in the past 12 months.

Sharmini, who has been running Sharmini’s Inspirational Indian Cuisine cookery school for more than a decade, likened her winning streak to picking up an Oscar, a Golden Globe, a Bafta and an Emmy all in the same year.

She said: "It's amazing. I feel on top of the world. It has been the best year ever. It gives you confidence that you are doing something good for your community, and bringing Indian cookery to York."

Sharmini, who started teaching Indian cookery 25 years ago through adult eduction classes, said she was particularly proud to have beaten rivals in cities such as Bradford and Leicester where Indian cooking and cookery schools are more common.

She said: "That we are in York and we have won is amazing."

York Press: Sharmini Thomas - Indian cookery school tutor - who has won ten awards in the past yearSharmini Thomas - Indian cookery school tutor - who has won ten awards in the past year (Image: Newsquest)

The tutor, who runs her cookery classes at Joseph Rowntree School in York, said she had collected three trophies and a bunch of certificates in recognition of her success and was keeping them on display in her home.

Among the ten awards she has won recently are:

* Best Curry School Award England 2021 from 10th English curry Awards

* Best sole trader from Federation of Small Business Awards

* Tripadvisor's Travellers' Choice Award

* The Award for Excellence in Culinary Experiences in England in the Travel and Hospitality Awards

* Specialist Cookery School of the Year-Yorkshire (York) in the Prestige Yorkshire Awards.

Her most recent victory was winning a Gold Award for the Best Consumer UK Business at the Best Business Women Awards. The judges said: "Sharmini demonstrates a clear strategic approach to constantly innovating her business proposition. Her results and dedication is most impressive. A simple idea with some great results!"

Sharmini switched to offering cookery lessons via Zoom during the pandemic but is now back running her in person cookery courses.

She teaches individuals and groups and offers team-building cookery sessions for businesses too. You can find out more at:

A personal highlight of her incredible year was meeting TV presenter Clare Balding and politican Nicola Sturgeon at the FSB awards which were held in Glasgow.

"Clare Balding was the MC and the First Minister of Scotland spoke and praised everybody. Who would ever have thought I would be meeting such people!"

It seems fitting to give Sharmini another honour -The Press's trader of the week. Congratulations Sharmini on an incredible 12 months.

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