Michael Oliver, chairman of Knutsford-based manufacturer Oliver Valves, has been named Manufacturing Entrepreneur at the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards (North and Midlands).

The judges commended Michael on his “first-class business, built from scratch, debt-free and independent of the banks with a clear focus on values” and described the firm as “truly world-class – a quality manufacturing business with global reach.”

Michael Oliver said: “It has taken more than 30 years of hard work, determination and innovation to get the business to where it is today and I think the judges recognised this.

“It is also important to remember that building a business is not a solo achievement, and I owe a lot of thanks to my talented and hard-working colleagues at Oliver Valves.”

Michael will now go on to compete in the national awards, taking place in October.

The awards were presented at Manchester’s Lowry Hotel and were judged by a panel presided over by North West Regional Development Agency’s deputy chair, Vanda Murray.