WINNER of the small business award sponsored by Hyndburn Enterprise Trust was Colne-based IT firm Holker Network Solutions.

This was the first award the company had won since it was founded in 2009 and directors Matthew Metcalfe and Mike Ingham said it had been great seeing the business go from strength to strength.

The company now employs 10 staff and specialises in designing and supplying high standard and cost-effective IT network and support.

Mr Metcalfe, who was diagnosed with cancer six months after Holker was set up and created a desk from his hospital bed, said: “It is absolutely wonderful to have some recognition for what we have done. We have put everything into this and it is all for the customers because that is what makes the business.

“It is great for the team too.

“Starting in the middle of a recession is not good, we have had a hard three years, but we have got through it and all our hard work has paid off.”

Mr Metcalfe said one of the highlights of the past year had been doubling the company’s turnover and being able to give its staff a reward at Christmas.

He said: “It is great to be able to take staff out for our three-year anniversary.

“We have had all positive feedback from our customers too, saying that we are big enough to cope with their needs but small enough to care.

“We are just looking forward to more of the same next year.”

In the next year, Holker will be taking up the entire ground floor of the Holker Business Centre, which will provide additional sales and workshop areas and allow for the provision of in-house training and demonstration facilities.

Also to come is ‘The Holk’, a £40,000 data security system that will provide revolutionary ultra secure and fully-encrypted backup, capable of storing vital information for thousands of businesses.