A COMPANY founded by a former Ilkley Grammar School pupil is in the running to be named one of the best rural businesses in the UK after being shortlisted for a regional Rural Business Award.

Comms Kick, which was founded by Chloe Hampson Ward in February 2018, has been shortlisted for best Rural Digital, Communications or Media Business at the 2019/20 Rural Business Awards, held in partnership with Amazon. The company will battle it out against fellow rural businesses, entrepreneurs and enterprises from across the region for a place at the national final.

Chloe Hampson Ward who is now based in Skipton, founded Comms Kick in February 2018. She attended Ilkley Grammar School between 1999 – 2004 where she first learnt about PR completing a task writing for BBC Radio 1’s Newsbeat and attending a training day at the Yorkshire Post. The PR and marketing agency has supported a range of Yorkshire businesses including prestigious wedding venue Birdsall House in Malton and Classical Sheffield’s bi-annual festival. Comms Kick was also entrusted with managing the PR campaign for London’s longest running immersive theatre experience, Guild of Misrule’s The Great Gatsby, when it returned to its home in York in November.

As well as running PR campaigns it also manages social media platforms for a variety of organisations and launched #digiwellnesswednesday earlier this year; a scheme which aims to give tips on how to make social media work for individuals and their children in short, accessible posts online each week.

The Rural Business Awards 2019/20, in partnership with Amazon, will mark the Awards’ fifth year of celebrating the success of businesses across the UK’s rural economy – a segment which employs in excess of 3.4 million people in over 750,000 businesses in England alone. The Awards are organised by rural business for rural business with the aim of celebrating the achievements of rural businesses and developing a strong network for rural business owners.

Director Chloe Hampson Ward said: “When I launched Comms Kick just 15 months ago I had a seven-month old son at home so the pressure was on to make it a success. Comms Kick now boasts a portfolio of nine clients and has worked with some incredible businesses. To be recognised by the Rural Business Awards feels really special.”

Director and Co-Founder of The Rural Business Awards, Anna Price, said: “The 2019/20 Awards have seen record numbers of entries and it’s encouraging to see so many rural businesses express a desire to celebrate their successes on a regional and national scale. We are passionate about creating a nurturing environment where rural businesses can develop, and this starts by showcasing the great work they do. On behalf of everyone at the Rural Business Awards, we want to say well done to Comms Kick, and all the shortlisted businesses, and wish them luck ahead of the regional finals.”