Like many other firms affected during Covid-19, national property search firm X-Press Legal Services has had to adapt to a new way of remote working and business ‘as unusual’ – this includes the firm switching its annual awards ceremony onto the Zoom video conferencing platform for its 27 office network.

Managing Director Lynne Lister comments: “We’ve really missed being able to all come together at our annual conference this year, which should have been held last month.  However, we decided that Covid-19 shouldn’t stop us from celebrating the tremendous efforts put in by our business owners during this challenging time.”

The team at X-Press’s head office arranged for celebratory prosecco and chocolates to be delivered to all owners who were also encouraged to wear full evening gown or NHS rainbow colours for the online award event. Digital award certificates were also issued to the winners for the first time.

Each year, X-Press business owners are recognised in the following categories and this year the award for Corporate Social Responsibility was included for the first time.

  • Brand Builder of the Year – Wendy Reece, X-Press Legal Services Fylde Coast & Cumbria
  • Business Development Award – Tom Mannion, X-Press Legal Services SW & NW London
  • Social Media Award – Andy and Louise Gallagher, X-Press Legal Services Durham
  • X-Cellence Club – Penny Brierley X-Press Legal Services Gloucestershire & Linda Mannion X-Press Legal Services Wiltshire & South Glos
  • Academy – Russell Brown X-Press Legal Services Stockport
  • Franchisee of the Year – Liz and James Ferguson X-Press Legal Services Cornwall & Devon
  • Corporate Social Responsibility – Neil and Helen Bedford X-Press Legal Services Hampshire

Lynne continues: “During what has been a very difficult time for everyone, we have taken this as an opportunity to help franchisees improve product knowledge, stay connected to our network and clients and also reach out to support our clients, both with free training and practical solutions. Recorded webinars have been invaluable in training staff as well as continuing to promote our businesses.”

Neil and Helena Bedford from X-Press Legal Services Hampshire were awarded the Corporate Social Responsibility award for their volunteering with Blood Bikes UK during the Covid-19 pandemic.  As well as volunteering as a rider, Neil also acts as an on-call controller and takes calls and assigns deliveries for the Hampshire Blood Bikes Group. The group has been helping in different ways during Covid-19 – delivering medicines from hospitals to local people in lockdown.

Alongside the Blood Bike activities Neil and Helena have been volunteering with local groups to deliver prescriptions from local pharmacies, PPE to doctors and nurses in hospitals and helping out with ‘odd jobs’ for the local community.  One such odd job was a rush repair of a set of dentures that an elderly gentleman had snapped in half.  The Bedfords were able to collect them, have them repaired and returned within four hours.

Winner of the X-Cellence club award Linda Mannion said: “At X-Press, we feel like a family and really do look after and support each other and this has been absolutely proven during the UK lockdown.  We’ve all come together virtually to celebrate our achievements and demonstrate how agile we are at adapting to a new normal.”