ST Austell Brewery won three awards at the national family business of the year awards, including the overall prize, winning the title of Supreme Family Business.

The south west brewery also won best food and drink as well as best family business in the south west.

James Staughton, fifth generation chief executive of St Austell Brewery, said: “This is a fantastic award to win and I am incredibly honoured to accept the award on behalf of everybody at St Austell Brewery.

“We are a proud, independent, family-run business that’s been around for over 165 years, but without the support of everyone involved in our constantly expanding and complex operations, we wouldn’t be the success that we are today.”

St Austell Brewery is now the largest regional brewer and wholesale wine and spirits distributor in the south west, with a pub and hotel estate of 180 managed and tenanted sites.

James added: “Our heritage is extremely important to us and the Hicks family crest, originating in the 17th century, still forms a central part of our corporate branding.

“Tribute, our flagship ale, was named in tribute to the family and those who built the business.

“To win this great accolade against such worthy competition makes us very proud and we are glad to be contributors to the strong and vibrant family business community across the UK.”

The Family Business of the Year Awards, organised by Family Business United, celebrate the vital contribution that family businesses of all sizes play in the UK economy.

With around five million family firms in the UK providing around 12 million jobs, the awards aim to reward the firms with the recognition they deserve.

Paul Andrews, founder and MD of Family Business United, said: “St Austell Brewery is a fantastic family firm and is highly deserving of all the plaudits that winning this award brings.

“This is a family business with core values that enable them to provide places that inspire and products and experiences that delight.

“The judges were impressed with the very nature of who they are and what they do.

“They are proud of the families that have worked for them for generations, have solid governance and above all, great products that build on their family heritage.

“They are a world class drinks and hospitality company helping to put the South West and family firms across the UK on the map.

“They really do exemplify all that is great about being a family business.”

Clare Reid of Seven Investment Management, who presented the award, said: “This is a family business with a remarkable history and heritage that remains relevant to the current day.

“Family is very much at the heart of all they do, and they are a superb example of a great British family firm and one that is setting the bar for others to follow.”

The 2019 awards attracted a record number of entries from across the UK, with more family firms than ever competing for the awards.