What happens when you put 300 of the UK's top dating professionals together in one room? Hilarity, carnage and a sense that the UK singles are in very good hands.
The UK Dating Awards took place in the stunning Prince Consort room at the Honorary Artillery Company building in London. The brain child of Charly Lester, the awards were established to recognise excellence and expertise in all areas of the dating industry. Not just the big shots either, but newcomers to the industry who are making a big impact.
If you're single and want to use a dating service, it can be a minefield. There are so many options, how do you know which one to use? That's where the awards come in. They're a great guideline for finding reputable dating services, monitoring the industry and making it more accountable so that those dodgy dating businesses (and there are many in matchmaking unfortunately) don't get the chance to stick around for long.
It's about time the UK dating industry had some accountability and the awards are a fantastic step forward.
The night itself was jam packed with everyone from the big online dating companies such as eHarmony, Lovestruck and Guardian Soulmates, to TV dating expert Jo Hemmings and the glossy magazines who write about all things love, dating and breakups. There were also newcomers such as best new dating app Trueview and best new dating individual, which went to dating profile photographer Saskia Nelson.
Of course, I had a vested interest in one award in particular - Matchmaker of the Year. Up against some of the most recognisable names in the industry, it was a tough call on who might win but I remained elegant, composed and sophisticated as it was announced I had won the award. Well, actually I jumped up, screamed and proceeded to dance around for a bit but a girl has got to celebrate!
The mood was truly celebratory and what a fantastic night it was.
UK Dating Awards 2014 Winners - The Best In The UK Dating Industry
Websites and Apps
Dating Website of the Year: Lovestruck
Newcomer App of the Year: Trueview
Daters Favourite Website: Guardian Soulmates
Dating App of the Year: Lovestruck
Newcomer Website of the Year: Inner Circle
Best Specialist Dating Site: Muddy Matches
Religious Dating Site of the Year: Christian Connection
Matchmaker of the Year:Caroline Brealey (Mutual Attraction)
Blogger of the Year: Katy Horwood
Dating Journalist of the Year: Andy Jones
Dating Expert of the Year: Jo Hemmings
Best New Dating Individual: Saskia Nelson
Dating Entrepreneur of the Year: Turn Partners
Best Singles Party: Lovestruck
Best London Dating Event: Inner Circle
Best Speed Dating Event: Date in a Dash
Best Food or Drink Event: Table8
Most Original Dating Event: Loveflutter
Safer Dating Award: Scamalytics
Best Dating Column: Sex and the Single Guy (Cosmopolitan)
Best Dating Blog: All Sweetness and Life
Best Dating TV Show: First Dates
Best Newcomer Dating Blog: Urban Social
Best Magazine for Dating Advice: Comspoiltan
Best Dating Related Advert: Guardian Soulmates
Founders Award: Tinder
Congratulations to all the winners of the UK Dating Awards. May we collectively bring together thousands of UK singles and continue to spread the love!