The Dulux Academy has crowned Stuart Yates of Stuart Yates Decor from Chesterfield the winner of the second annual Dulux Academy Design and Decorate Challenge.
Noted by the judges for his unique craftsmanship – his eye for design plus expert wallpapering skills – Stuart will now see his wallpaper design made into bespoke rolls of wallpaper by Graham and Brown.
His prize includes the chance to see his paper being made at the Graham and Brown factory in Blackburn; further complemented with a factory tour and a luxury stay the Dunkenhalgh Hotel and Spa with meal for two, plus a Dulux Academy goody bag.
Stuart has been named the challenge champion after successfully beating off exceptional competition from experienced decorators across the UK. The judging panel – consisting of head judge Neil Ogilvie, Chief Executive Officer at the Painting and Decorating Association; Marianne Shillingford, Creative Director of Dulux; Mark Rigby, Skills Development Consultant at Dulux Academy; Louise Stevenson, National Account Manager at Graham & Brown; and Rebecca Ireland, Product Manager, at Graham & Brown – praised Stuart for being “a credit to our sector”.
Mark Rigby continues: “The voting could not have been tighter. Scoring was out of a potential 300 points and the difference between second and first place was a mere three points. The voting included the public vote which accounted for 25 per cent and we placed huge emphasis on ensuring all the judges worked independently to each other, for a completely impartial result. Stuart stole the crown because, across our diverse judging criteria, he exhibited the best skills across the board.”
Vickie Mather, Dulux Academy Manager, added: “We created this competition with the sole purpose of celebrating the amazing talents of the skilled and accomplished professionals who make it their daily mission to raise the standards of our industry. All of our finalists showed the craftsmanship that make our industry great, and we are proud to honour Stuart Yates as the best of the best. He is a role model for the next generation of tradespeople to aspire to.”
The Dulux Academy Design and Decorate Challenge has been created to celebrate this year’s International Wallpaper Week.
To take part, entrants were asked to design their very own wallpaper and submit – complete with a short description explaining the inspiration, and functionality, behind their concept. The finalists’ designs were then shared for the public to vote on.
The four other finalists were – Nick Adonis, Karen Julien, Andrew Bigwood and Miles Newby.