Heidi Darlow, Head of Design for Norwich based Florida Group Ltd (TFG) has won The Worshipful Company of Pattenmakers Young Manager Award 2018.

Heidi was chosen from a strong field of footwear candidates following a judging process overseen by a panel of industry experts.

Nominated by Claire Farmer, Product Director at TFG, Heidi said: “ I was thrilled to be nominated for this award but to win is something else. Working for Florida and to lead design for an established brand like Van Dal is incredibly rewarding but to be recognised for doing it is just so exciting.”

As part of the award she will receive a bespoke, professional development program from the Worshipful Company along with a cash bursary donated by the Paice Memorial Bursary.

The Worshipful Company of Pattenmakers has run its Young Manager Award Scheme for over 25 years and has supported many individuals with their career development over that time. This year’s judging panel was chaired by Jane Wilson, Managing Partner at Moot Consulting, and supported by  Stephen Etheridge, Chairman of Church’s, both senior footwear industry figures and members of the Pattenmakers’ Company.

Speaking of Heidi’s entry, chair of the judging panel, Jane Wilson said: “We are thrilled to have her as our winner. She is a confident, well presented and mature individual. She was articulate, polished with a big picture feel for the market and market opportunities. She is clear on her ambitions and committed to a future in the Footwear industry.”

Claire Farmer, Product Director at TFG added: “We would like to congratulate Heidi on this fantastic achievement. I am delighted that she has been recognised with this prestigious award. She is a warm, wonderfully talented and enthusiastic designer with a very real passion for shoes.  We are very proud to have her as part of our team here at The Florida Group.”

The Lord Mayor locum tenens Ald Lord Mountevans presented Heidi with her award at the annual dinner of the Pattenmakers’ Company’s held at the Mansion House. She will be supported by the Company throughout 2018. She will also receive the Freedom of the Livery with the opportunity to apply for the Freedom of the City of London at a later stage.

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