A Crosskeys business woman was among the winners at the 2018 Caerphilly Business Forum awards.

Claire Mountain, of Mountain Celebrations, took the Business Woman of the Year Award, which was sponsored by Glenside Commercials.

The 17th annual awards brought together businesses across a wealth of industry sectors and sizes for an evening that celebrated the outstanding achievements of those companies and individuals making that have made a significant impact on the regional economy.

The event, held at the Llechwen Hall Hotel, was attended by almost 300 guests and was hosted by former BBC Wales news anchor Jamie Owen.

Scooping the Overall Winner award was Lenstec. Since 1983, the company has grown to become one of the leading manufacturers and employers in the area. Hefin David AM described the company as 'one of the greatest success stories of our region over the last few decades'.

Forum chairwoman Denise Lovering, who steps down from her role at the end of December, said: “We are continually stunned by the quality of entrants these awards have received year after year, and yet again the judging panel have faced a very difficult task in deciding who the winners will be.

“Each business shortlisted can be extremely proud of their achievements. Their hard work has clearly paid dividends and it is thanks to the businesses and individuals represented at these awards that our region continues to serve as an economic beacon for the whole of Wales.

“On a personal, this year was my last as head of the forum. It has been a true privilege to serve the Caerphilly business community and I look forward to seeing the forum continue its great work in the years to come.”

Other winners were: Apprentice of the Year Award, sponsored by Educ8 - Kirsty Davies, Help4Wales Foundation;

Creative & Digital Business of the Year Award - Big Lemon; Entrepreneur of the Year Award, sponsored by Coleg y Cymoedd - Gareth Jones, Town Square Spaces; Large Business of the Year Award, sponsored by Caerphilly County Borough Council - Lenstec Optical Group; Contribution to the Rural Economy Award, sponsored by Cwm a Mynydd - Llechwen Hall Hotel; Small Business of the Year, sponsored by Coffee 37 - Maid to Help Cleaning Specialist;

Start-Up Business of the Year Award - Panda Education & Training; Welsh ICE Business of the Year Award, sponsored by Welsh ICE - Weird Triangle; Over all winner - Lenstec Optical Group.