Builders merchants from Belfast, Lisburn, Newry, Larne, Coleraine and Ballywalter have been honoured in the fifth Octabuild Builders Merchant Awards for Northern Ireland. The awards were presented on Thursday 12 April at a gala event in the Hilton Belfast before an audience of almost 250 people representing the merchant and building industry. The building material manufacturers who organised the awards as Octabuild are: Gyproc, Dulux Paints, Glennon Brothers, Kingspan Insulation, Sanbra Fyffe, Tegral and Wavin.

The overall award went to JP Corry, Lisburn while six other category awards were presented to:
· JP Corry, Coleraine for Best Premises;

· MacBlair, Larne as best in the Management Category;

· Newry Building Supplies part of the Murdock Group for its Business Focus;

· Haldane Fisher Ladas Drive, Belfast for its Customer Service;

· NG Bell & Son, Ballywalter won the best Owner Managed/single store category

· MacBlair Boucher, Belfast won the Multi-Location branch award.

Michael Gilvary, Manager JP Corry, Lisburn (right) receives the overall award in the Octabuild Builders Merchant Awards Northern Ireland 2018 from Declan Smyth, Chairman Octabuild.

The awards judge, James Burke was lavish in his praise of the high standard he found among all the builders merchants visited. He described the winners as exceptionally well-run businesses. He said that the overall winner, JP Corry, Lisburn, is a very energised branch with; a strong team spirit; Well laid out external site with good signage, a “Have a go” enthusiastic attitude; improved retail standards and a flexible approach to staff working hours.
In introducing the awards the Octabuild chairman Declan Smyth said that the Octabuild companies come together to promote the supply of quality products and to highlight the benefit of dealing with merchants who operate well-managed business and who believe in providing a quality service.

He said that the fact that merchants entered the Octabuild Builders Merchants Awards is a signal that they also subscribe to this ethos.
He also warned that until more clarity emerges in the Brexit talks the uncertainty will no doubt lead to delays in companies making decisions on capital spending.

The overall winner, JP Corry Lisburn has been trading since 1814. It employs 16 full and part-time staff. This JP Corry branch stocks a full range of building supplies and timber product. It has an impressive landscaping and roofing display as well as a doors and floors showroom. The JP Corry group has been in business for over 200 years and has a network of 17 branches in Northern Ireland.


A second JP Corry branch, JP Corry Coleraine which won the award for best premises is the group’. s newest branch. It acquired H&T Bellas in 2017 The branch operates as a timber merchants and building supplier in Coleraine, and stocks the complete range of building, joinery and specification products for the trade and general public It has a staff of 13.
Haldane Fisher, Ladas Drive Belfast is the winner of the Customer Service award. This store prides itself on its excellent customer service. It has a very experienced team in all departments. It has been 72 years in business and employee 23 full and part-time staff

MacBlair Boucher Belfast, the Multi-Location Branch winner has been in business for 45 years. It has 35 staff. It describes itself as much more than a builders merchant, with specialisms in Doors & Ironmongery, Civils, Bathrooms, Paint & Plumbing, MacBlair Boucher strive to fulfil every need of its customers under the one roof. With service being at the forefront of our staff minds at all times as it lives by its “Here to Help” motto.

All the winners. back row, left to right: Norman Bell. NG Bell & Son, Ballywalter; Barry McKay, MacBlair Larne; Tom Dunn, MacBlair Boucher, Belfast; and Colm Campbell, Newry building Supplies. Front row, left to right; Ryan Orr, JP Corry Coleraine; Declan Smith, Chairman Octabuild; Michael Gilvary, JP Corry, lisburn and Dennis pollock, Haldane fisher, Ladas Drive, belfast.

Another MacBlair branch, MacBlair Larne took the Management award. MacBlair Larne has been part of MacBlair for 12 years, but as a business in Larne it’s been on the go in one way or another for over 100 years. With a staff of 13 MacBlair Larne truly embrace the group customer service ethos of “Here to Help”. Its dedicated team take great pride in ensuring their extensive knowledge of the products they sell is continually developed through a program of continuous training. This allows them to offer the best possible solutions to its loyal local customer base.

Newry Building Supplies, which won the Business Focus award is 33 years in business. It is part of Murdock Builders Merchants a leading independent supplier of timber and building materials in Northern Ireland and Dublin. The group has 13 branches plus 4 specialist divisions. Its business is built on relationships and it pride itself on customer service and providing a quality service at the right price to its customers across NI & Dublin. It caters for all types of projects, from extensions, renovations and Self Builds, to large commercial jobs. The group employs over 400 people and has been in business for 36 years.

The owner managed/Single Store Award went to NG Bell & Son, Ballywalter for the second year in succession. 68 years in business it is a family run business with 18 staff.

It offers a wide range of building and DIY products to the public, trade and private home builder.