Dr Tessa Hartmann, the founder of the Jersey Style Awards, said she believed the programme had helped to improve ‘brand Jersey’ and had raised the profile of the Island. She added that she would like a potential second series to show off more of what local businesses and producers have to offer.
She launched the awards in 2017 to celebrate the contributions of businesses, organisations and individuals to the Island’s lifestyle and the event has previously welcomed celebrities including Dame Shirley Bassey and Sophie Ellis-Bextor.
Dr Hartmann, a media and fashion entrepreneur, said that while government restrictions meant that there would not be a 2021 Style Awards, work had already started on 2022, with a number of celebrities showing interest.
‘I have been gagging to do them [the awards] again. We have a team meeting about it every week,’ she said. ‘We had a date pencilled in for June at the Royal Jersey Showground and my intention was to bring it back this year but that’s gone by the wayside now. I did think about doing a version of it but then the biggest challenge I had was businesses being inactive so there’s nothing to judge because they’ve all been shut down during the year.
‘The best we can do is absolutely plan for next year, which we’re already doing.’
She said that for her, the Real Housewives of Jersey, which is being broadcast on ITVBe, had been an opportunity to further showcase what the Island has to offer, something which had already borne results.
‘Because of Housewives, the world suddenly started to look at Jersey,’ she said.
‘Interestingly, since it has been on, I have had a lot of celebrities contact me and say “I would love to come to the Style Awards if you do that again”.
‘And, of course, I’ve said yes to them. I’d like to bring them all over and do everything that we can do to showcase our Island.’
Dr Hartmann said that although it was still uncertain whether there would be a second series of the show, she would welcome the opportunity to continue promoting ‘brand Jersey’. I would like a second series to push all those other stories in terms of what Jersey has to offer, in our foods and in the local economy.
‘I see Housewives almost as a joined-up thinking about our brand-development programme. For me it was about repositioning “brand Jersey”.’
Read the full interview with Tessa Hartmann in Wednesday’s [24 February] The Business in the JEP.