The founding director of a specialist PR consultancy based near Bath has been named ‘Independent PR Practitioner of the Year’ for the second consecutive time.
The annual Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) PRide Awards for the South of England and Channel Islands recognise the top campaigns and communicators across a wide regional base. Entries are encouraged from any organisation, company or individual connected to, or working with, the public relations or communications industries.
Ben Veal, chartered PR practitioner and founder of Second Mountain Comms, has now received a Gold PRide Award for two years running as the region’s top independent public relations professional.
Veal, 38, set up his own business during the first COVID-19 lockdown following redundancy from a senior PR agency role in central Bath. Over the last two years, his focus has been on specialising in supporting purpose-led companies and charities; 20% of his agency’s time is committed to pro-bono work each month, including aiding local charities People against Poverty and Wiltshire Youth for Christ. Through his close involvement with the CIPR - the world’s only Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners - Veal is also committed to enhancing the strategic role that PR plays in organisations today; he currently serves as Chair for the CIPR South West region, and was also recently appointed to the national CIPR Council for 2023-24.
The second annual PRide award win caps off an impressive year of accolades for the fledgling business and its owner: Veal received the ‘Mark of Excellence’ at the national 2022 CIPR Excellence Awards in London, while Second Mountain Comms was named ‘Start Up of the Year’ at this summer’s Creative Bath Awards ceremony.
Ben Veal, Chart.PR MCIPR and founder of Second Mountain Comms, says:
“I’m genuinely overwhelmed by everything that’s happened over these last few years, and to be in this position today. It was only two-and-a-half years ago that I found myself being made redundant for the first time in my career. Fast forward to now, and I’m unbelievably honoured to have been recognised as a CIPR PRide gold award winner not once, but twice.
“Purpose in business has never been more important than in today’s world. During such uncertain times for our society, we need organisations and business leaders that stand for something and use their position in the marketplace to make a positive impact. I’m proud to be able to help share their stories.”
CIPR judges commented on Veal’s award win:
“Ben Veal encompasses what it means to be a successful independent practitioner through demonstrating strong client successes and achievements, robust working practices and established relationships. A well-deserved Gold winner; also committed to being a representative voice of the PR and communications industry through being involved with relevant committees and groups.”
Based at the Glove Factory Studios in Wiltshire, Second Mountain Comms is an independent consultancy that offers meaningful PR, content and marketing support to help good firms and business leaders do good. The business recently launched its very own podcast series - Good Journeys with Second Mountain - which shares inspiring people’s inspiring life stories.
The full CIPR South of England and Channel Islands PRide Awards 2022 winners list can be found here.