Elements or Lower

Fri, 28 Apr 2006

Gladstone can Bite Me

No, we didn’t win, nor were we the runner-up. This wasn’t entirely unexpected, of course, since the awards were for innovation, and community web sites have been done before. The winners in our category, the European Health Insurance Card and the London Borough of Islington’s Sign-Video Contact Centre are certainly more innovative, and thoroughly deserving of their awards.

That’s not to say that we weren’t disappointed, but getting shortlisted in a hotly-contested category is very much something to crow about in itself. The only genuine niggle was that, in reading out the shortlist, the presenter claimed that Window on Woking was a product of Wokingham Borough Council. The barely-concealed muttering from my colleagues around the table suggested that this is far from an isolated incident.

The ceremony was held at Madame Tussauds, with the unexpected consequence that Gladstone was seated just behind me throughout dinner, his cold, dead glare distracting me enough that I found myself adding milk to my espresso.

Tussauds seemed considerably smaller than I remember from being a child. Nonetheless, a free BT-branded disposable camera provided for ample opportunity to have pictures taken towering over Tom Cruise (who can also bite me, though for different reasons), and the evening concluded with 75 of Monopoly money being frittered away on quite possibly the most unruly Roulette table I’ve ever enjoyed.

We can hardly complain, not least because the project’s grand fromage, Geoff Young, won Innovator of the Year last year!