Newport-based Livertons Opticians felt proud that their hard work had been recognised when they won the Customer Service Award at last year's South Wales Argus Business Awards.

Owner Catherine McNamara said the awards highlight the excellence of Newport as a centre for business in particular independents.

Her business is based in Charles Street, in the heart of Newport city centre.

Q: What did winning a South Wales Argus Business Award mean to you and/or your business?

Catherine McNamara: We were very honoured to receive the customer service award at the South Wales Argus Business Awards 2018. We felt proud that our hard work had been recognised by a team of judges already established within the business industry. As a new independent business, it allowed us a fantastic opportunity to get our name recognised as well as offering a good platform to show Newport what we can provide. During the past two years we’ve been very fortunate in being able to build strong relationships with our patients, so to receive this award felt like a formal recognition of our connection with them. Hopefully our customer service results in repeat visits, as we like to think that we go above and beyond, offering a very personal and tailor made experience for each and every patient.

Q: Why would you encourage local businesses and individuals to enter the South Wales Argus Business Awards this year?

CM: We would encourage local businesses to enter the South Wales Argus Business Awards, as not only does it offer the opportunity to highlight your skills and services, but also allows us to showcase what Newport can offer South Wales. It is a great business opportunity and also an occasion to meet like-minded business owners within the local community.

Q: How and why are awards such as these important in helping to raise the profile of Newport and Gwent businesses and individuals?

CM: Awards such as these highlight the very best of Newport and hopefully inspire other businesses to embrace recognition and raise the profile of Newport. As a city, we have a diverse range of independent businesses, well-established corporate enterprises and budding entrepreneurs, making Newport a unique destination that we should be encouraged to shout about.

Entries are open for the 2019 South Wales Argus Business Awards, which are being held in association with Newport Now Business Improvement District, until September 13. To see the full list of categories and sponsors, and to enter go to