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Tell us: Vote for your favourite independent shop, restaurant or business in Ipswich

16:00 10 July 2014

Wendy Childs and her sons John and Robert Manning each run Maudes Attic, House A House in the Town, and the Merchant respectively, which are next door to each other on St Peters Street in Ipswich

Wendy Childs and her sons John and Robert Manning each run Maudes Attic, House A House in the Town, and the Merchant respectively, which are next door to each other on St Peters Street in Ipswich

Nestled alongside the major High Street chains in Ipswich are a treasure trove of independently cafes, restaurants and shops, each working to create a uniqueness that will set Ipswich apart from its neighbours.

Rob HardyRob Hardy

But which ones are your favourites? Do you have a go-to shop that always has the perfect something when every other store has failed to offer any inspiration? Or do you return to the same restaurant time and again because you know the service will be second to none?

All About Ipswich are once again running the Ipswich Independent Business of the Year awards and are calling on readers to nominate their favourites.

This year the competition, supported by the Ipswich Star, aims to truly celebrate those stores that give Ipswich its unique character and feel.

The five businesses with the most votes will then be ‘mystery shopped’ and a panel of expert judges will assess the finalists on friendliness of staff, staff knowledge, customer service, individuality, quality of environment and overall customer experience, amongst other criteria, before deciding which should be named Independent Business of the Year 2014.

Kathy FrostKathy Frost

Last year’s winner was Jacey’s Coffee House, a family run café in the heart of Ipswich.

Owner Colin Williams said: “We are so pleased and honoured to have won the award for Independent Business of the Year in 2013, voted for by our loyal customers. Our success is down to sheer hard-work and keeping the ethos on good home cooking.”

Traders in St Peter’s Street, Ipswich are excited about the awards and Kathy Frost, of gift store LoveOne, said a neighbouring coffee house would get her vote.

She said: “I’d have to say Baker & Barista, their cakes are amazing. But if I could, I’d name them all.”

When asked who he would nominate, Rob Hardy, of ice cream parlour I-Scream, said: “That’s a hard one, but I would say Maud’s Attic, there is always a lot of handy stuff in there. I will add though, that all of the ones I know of are good and know how hard it is to make a living.”

Nominate your favourite independent business here deadline for entries is Thursday, August 14.

The sun shines for the first day of the Suffolk Show 2015.

Tomorrow marks day one of the Suffolk Show 2016 - which promises to be the biggest ever show.

Only drivers with disability badges are permitted to park in the shared space in Felixstowe town centre.

Special constables are to be tasked to carry out random blitz days to tackle problems with illegal parking in Felixstowe town centre.

Matthew Brett freshens up the hay for Theberton Herd cows at the Suffolk Show.

This week we have a team of reporters and photographers at Trinity Park bringing you full coverage of the highlight of the Suffolk agricultural calendar - the Suffolk Show.

Ipswich Town Hall, Ipswich Icons column August 22, 2015

A blue plaque honouring Ipswich’s first female mayor is set to be installed above the entrance to Ipswich Town Hall as part of a project to honour women who have helped shape the town.

On going building work at Kesgrave High School to construct a new coffee shop for the students

Work has begun on a modern new dining and courtyard area at Kesgrave High School, and is expected to be open this September.

Hollesley Bay

Hollesley Bay prison’s Independent Monitoring Board Chairman has pledged continue with her duties despite being ostracised by other board members.

A police car has been involved in a collision.

A police car has collided with the central reservation on the A14 at Woolpit, causing delays on the westbound carriageway.

Floods block Holywells Road, Ipswich

Heavy rain and flooding has caused delays on the road and rail networks across Suffolk this morning, after more than a months worth of rain fell in four hours.

Enjoy a family day out at the Suffolk Show

Looking for ways to entertain the family during the school holidays? Here we bring you a round up of what is on in Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds and elsewhere in Suffolk, and into north Essex.

The Kingfisher Leisure Centre in Sudbury.

The rain may have stopped but the skies over Suffolk are grey and threatening, and your plans for the day have now fallen flat.

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