HER hard work behind the scenes at Harrogate Convention Centre has seen one ambitious team member given her well-deserved moment in the spotlight.
Paulina Wach took home the Unsung Hero title at the 2019 CHS Awards, a celebration of the UK event industry, at the Royal Armouries in Leeds.
After receiving her award, Paulina said she had been hopeful but admitted she didn’t think she would be the one taking home the trophy.
“I’ve never won anything in my life,” she said. “It was amazing to hear my name called out.”
Paulina joined the Housekeeping team in 2012 as a junior member after arriving from Poland, at the age of 21. When cleaning operations were taken in-house in 2015, her hard work and dedication eventually saw her offered the role of Housekeeping Manager.
Former head of Venue Services at the Convention Centre, Robert Penfold said: “It was a steep learning curve for her but she was a massive help to her managers. She was a constant.
“I remember one time when illness had taken a big toll on our team and left us understaffed before a major event. We had to get the place in top shape for the opening of one of our biggest trade shows.
“Paulina and two other team members put in 15-hour shifts to make sure we had the place looking immaculate. We even found out later that she’d dragged her boyfriend in to help out with some last-minute hoovering.”
During busy times at the venue Paulina can find herself overseeing a team of up to 50 people, yet she has still found time to build up a raft of professional qualifications.
Now with her trophy proudly on her desk, she said: “It was very emotional for me. I have made my parents really proud.
“This is the first trophy but not the last. I have big wall in my office to fill.”