Mainframe Awards 2018 Winners!

By Charlene Sharp & Hana York from Mainframe Derby

Creative and digital business celebrate success at Derby QUAD’s Mainframe Awards

Creative and digital business from across Derby and Derbyshire were recognised at the Mainframe Awards this week, highlighting the finest talent that the city and county has to offer.


Start-ups and established businesses were among 30 shortlisted to be in the chance of winning across ten categories.


On the night, digital marketing agency, Archer Hampson took two prizes with the public vote for “Digital Ambassador of the Year“ and the “Best Digital/Creative Team or Individual”.

Codemakers won “Best Digital Innovation” for its cloud-based delivery management software for retailers, Shipmate. “Best digital start up” went to Playtonic Games for its success with Yooka Laylee and Natalie Bamford from was recognised for “Putting Derby/Derbyshire on the Map” with an online resource for local events, attractions and family days out.

PR-Mainframe-6Other winners included Robert Wilkes at Lightwave Interactive for “Best New Product to Market” and “Project Most Proud of” went to Joe Clark and  Claire Cutts from V21 for their virtual exhibition space. Simon Rice scooped “Creativity for Good”  for his Cleen App and “Client of the Year” went to Collyfobble Brewery, following a nomination from Fluid Ideas, who’s Georgia Vicars was named “Emerging Digital Star (Under 25)”


PR-Mainframe-9Adam Buss, Derby Quad CEO said: “It is fantastic to celebrate the creative and digital talent we have here in Derby and Derbyshire. Mainframe, through The Big House programme, is supporting the development of the creative industries and encouraging creativity and digital innovation through networking and bringing some of the brightest creative talents to talk in Derby for the first time. It is brilliant to see business growing, jobs being created and positive contributions all the businesses make to the local economy.”

Chris Wood, Operations Manager at Playtonic Games said “We were delighted to receive the award for Best Digital Startup 2018!  At Playtonic we have worked hard to reignite peoples interest in the games we love to make and are developing a global IP & brand containing a whole universe of worlds and characters for the next generation of gamers to explore, all from our Derbyshire base.  We love working with The Big House and attending the events organised by Mainframe as they have allowed us to meet, interact and share with fellow creatives from across the region, as well as having a beer or two.  We look forward to growing together in the future!”

The prestigious panel of judges included Raja Javaid, Head of IT Digital & Digital Cultural Transformation, Rolls-Royce; Dr Jo Twist, OBE; Chief Executive Officer, Ukie; John Newbigin, OBE Chairman, Creative England; Kim Harper, Chief Executive, Community in Action; Paul Judge, Marketing Director, Air-IT; Neila Butt, Head of Internal Communications and Engagement, BBC; Stephen Barker, Chief Executive, Creative Quarter; John Forkin, Managing Director, Marketing Derby; Sarah Lay, Editor, Storge.


John Newbigin, OBE Chairman, Creative England said, “The Mainframe awards have revealed that Derby’s wealth of hi-end engineering skills is more than matched by the talent of its creative digital companies, developing brilliant new services and products of social, cultural and commercial value.”

The Mainframe Awards offered an unprecedented opportunity to highlight and celebrate talented creatives and digital businesses and their work.

Full list of winners:

  • Emerging Digital Star (Under 25): Georgia Vicars - Fluid Ideas Judge: Dr Jo Twist (OBE) (UKIE)
  • Best Digital Start Up: Playtonic Games Judge: Sarah Lay (Storge)
  • Best Digital Innovation: Codemakers for Shipmate Judge: Stephen Barker (Creative Quarter)
  • Project Most Proud Of: Joe Clark/Claire Cutts from V21 for V21 Artspace (creating virtual versions of exhibitions) Judge: John Newbigin OBE (Creative England)
  • Best Digital/Creative Team or Individual: Jack Williams – Archer Hampson Judge: Neila Butt (BBC)
  • New Product to Market: Robert Wilkes – Lightwave Interactive Judge: Raja Javaid (Rolls Royce)
  • Client of the Year: Collyfobble Brewery (Nominated by Fluid Idea’s) Judge: Paul Judge (Air IT)
  • Creativity for Good: Simon Rice – for his Cleen App (Nominated by Subism Ltd) Judge: Jayne Williams/ Kim Harper (Community in Action)
  • Putting Derby/Derbyshire on the Map: Natalie Bamford – Judge: John Forkin (Marketing Derby)
  • Digital Ambassador of the Year: Archer Hampson Judge: Public Vote

Mainframe is an initiative that aims to bring together a community of digital and creative business across Derby and Derbyshire, enabling real business growth and jobs. Mainframe is part of The Big House project, a collaboration providing sector specific support across the D2N2 area. The Big House aims to make it easier for digital creative business to understand and access the free help available in the region and is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

For more details about the free business support available to creative and digital businesses in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire through The Big House project, visit