VOTE NOW: Who has got The Sheffield Smile?

Vote now: The Star sponsored Sheffield Smile Award!
Vote now: The Star sponsored Sheffield Smile Award!
Have your say

SMILE! It’s good for business - as these 11 beaming hospitality workers are out to prove as the finalists of The Star backed Sheffield Smile Award, writes Graham Walker.

Fun and laughter in the workplace can create a commercial advantage.

And these 11 short-listed finalists are helping to make the city smiles better, say organisers of the annual Hospitality Sheffield Awards.

The Sheffield Smile Award, sponsored by The Star, will honour the hospitality worker who brightens everyone’s day with their warm, friendly personality, as they help to make Sheffield a destination of choice.

Our finalists have been chosen for their friendly personalities and welcoming smile.

And we want YOU to pick the winner - voting by text and email. Details below.

It is one of seven categories that make up the Hospitality Sheffield Awards, honouring hard work, high standards and expert customer-service, to be hosted this year by the BBC’s Tom Ingall at Tankersley Manor Hotel, on Thursday, October 11.

The theme is ‘A night in Paris’ and is set to attract 200 people, including staff from all 30 members of the Hospitality Sheffield consortium,

Managers from local hotels, events and conference venues have explained why they have selected their nominees for the Sheffield Smile Award. Their comments are next to the finalists’ names.

Now it’s over to you. Read the comments and vote by text or email.

You can only vote ONCE by email, to and put SMILE in the subject box, followed by the full name of the person you want to vote for.

Or vote as many times as you want by text. Text STA (SPACE) followed by SMILE (SPACE), then the initials of the person you want to vote for, to 61500. Texts cost 25p plus your usual network rate. Get the bill payer’s permission. For data protection policy see below.

Deadline for all your votes is midnight on Wednesday, September 26, 2012. Do not vote after deadline - you may be charged for your text and your vote will not be counted.


The comments are by their bosses and work colleagues from local hotels, events and conference venues - saying why they should win.

01. LISA BARRETT, aged 26, Receptionist, Holiday Inn, Doncaster.

Lisa’s bright and somewhat cheeky smile is the first thing that every guest in our hotel sees. Behind that smile is one of the brightest, bubbliest personalities you can imagine. Lisa’s manner is welcomed by all guests. Regular guests see her as a friend that they can share stories with, and new guests quickly warm to her. Lisa’s personality is infectious and she always spreads good humour amongst her colleagues, brightening their days at every turn.

02. PRISCILA EDWARDS, 29, Reception Team Member, Sheffield St Mary’s Gate Premier Inn

Priscila truly embodies the spirit of ‘The Sheffield Smile’ and we are well aware of how lucky we are to have her on our team. Regular comments from guests include, “outstandingly good!”, “she deserves recognition for being so accommodating”, and “Priscila is a credit to your company”. Initially from Brazil, she is fluent not only in English and Spanish but also 2 other languages – a fantastic bonus for our international guests! From the team’s perspective, Priscila is a constantly cheerful and supportive colleague. Her now famous paella recipe has become a hit with the whole hotel team.

03. BEN FOUNTAIN, 26, Food & Beverage Supervisor, Aston Hotel Sheffield.

In the two years that Ben has been with us, he has become a key member of staff. Ben is calm under pressure and is massively popular with our many corporate guests who rely on him to keep them refreshed during conferences and, in some cases, fully connected to projectors, internet and phone networks. Without Ben we would be a poorer hotel and we consider ourselves lucky to have him working here. Ben is also a huge Sheffield Wednesday fan and follows the team home and away whenever he can.

04. HARRIETT KENDALL, 23, Food & Beverage Supervisor, Hilton Sheffield

Harriett is a Yorkshire girl, born and bred. She has an infectious laugh and very bubbly and fun personality, which spreads around the team. It is due to her positivity and natural warmth that resulted in her promotion to Food & Beverage Supervisor and also Duty Manager. Whatever the situation, be it long hours or difficult queries from customers, Harriett always has the desire to help and please both colleagues and guests with a smile on her face in true hospitality spirit. Harriett is a keen traveller and is fascinated by different countries and cultures.

05. PETE LONG, 51, Maintenance Assistant, Copthorne Hotel

A fully qualified joiner and father of twin girls, Pete is a shining example of ‘The Sheffield Smile’. Pete strives daily to ensure that the needs of all our guests are anticipated and understands that anything he can do to make them leave wearing his infectious smile means we have achieved. Nothing is too much trouble for Pete. He is always happy and positive. Pete never has ‘problems’, he has ‘challenges’, which he usually conquers – a bonus when constructing portable bars and collapsible coffee tables! A huge Elvis fan, Pete will sing his own enthusiastic renditions when asked.

06. EMMA MAJOR, 25, Receptionist, Doubletree by Hilton Sheffield Park Hotel

Emma has a BSc degree in International Hotel Management from Sheffield Hallam University. Her passion for hospitality was ignited by a family trip to Disney World at the age of 7 – and now she wants to be the one adding a touch of magic to guests’ stays! Emma has a constantly positive attitude and a lovely, warm presence. It is a pleasure to have her on our team.

07. SASHA MALKIN, 23, Receptionist, Tankersley Manor.

With a smile that makes all our guests feel at home, Sasha is a true star on our reception. Her bubbly and infectious personality makes her a true ray of sunshine on a rainy Yorkshire day. Sasha’s other interests include dance, and she can still show you a move or two when she hits the dance-floor with friends.

08. NAOMI MULKEEN, 20, Guest Service Staff Food & Beverage, Jurys Inn Sheffield

Naomi is studying Tourism Management at Sheffield Hallam University and has worked with us now since November 2011. Guests always comment on how great she is and her knack for brightening up everyone’s day with her radiant smile and positive take on life is hugely appreciated by everyone here. She is a real pleasure to have around and is undoubtedly the true embodiment of ‘The Sheffield Smile’. Naomi likes to go to Zumba in her spare time and loves shopping, dancing and her Mum!

09. LYNNE NUTTAL, 50, Breakfast Supervisor, Kenwood Hall.

Prior to starting at Kenwood Hall, Lynne had her own business making sandwiches. However, Lynne wanted a new challenge and therefore moved into the hospitality industry. Every morning Lynne greets our guests and staff with a welcoming smile and her professional, charming personality. Having two sons herself aged 26 and 22, Lynne is seen as the mother of the hotel. Staff feel at ease with her and are happy to speak to her as a colleague and a friend, and guests praise her politeness and friendliness.

10. SARAH ROUND, 40, Housekeeping Supervisor, Best Western Plus Mosborough Hall Hotel

Sarah has been with us for 2 years, and every day Sarah arrives at work bright and early. As one of the first members of staff to arrive in the morning, we love that Sarah is always here to greet guests and staff alike with her fabulous smile and positive outlook. Truly a fantastic way to start the day. Sarah has a lot of work to get through, but is always flexible and never says ‘no’. Outside of work, Sarah enjoys spending time with her lovely family and 4 children.

11. JOELLE SELLARS, 24, Receptionist/Events Coordinator, Rutland Hotel Sheffield

We asked our staff who they would nominate for this award, and EVERY one of them voted for Joelle. She works undeniably hard at the hotel and is always the first to get involved with everything...with a BIG smile on her face. Joelle is the resident Christmas Elf – promoting Christmas at the Rutland online and in person (literally donning elf attire at various locations!). She is also a part-time drama student and regularly performs with the Norton Players. Happy, smiley, and totally crackers – we love her!