The Fellowship Luncheon is one of the hairdressing industry’s favourite events. Every December, famous and familiar faces flock to the beautiful Dorchester Hotel on London’s Park Lane to celebrate those in hairdressing who go above and beyond for the Fellowship, and to present this year’s Fellowship Awards.

It was hosted this year for the first time by Chancellor Ken Picton, who brought plenty of humour and character to the role, cracking Welsh jokes and teaching the audience funny Welsh words and phrases. He was joined on stage throughout by President Karine Jackson and Chairman Jo Martin, who Ken affectionately dubbed ‘Ken’s Angels’.

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Alongside a decadent dinner, including a ‘flaming dragon’ dessert that made it onto many an Instagram post, Fellowship members, sponsors, and council members took the time to recognise the industry’s heroes. Amongst the biggest accolades of the afternoon, was the Patron of Honour award, given to one incredibly special person. Only three other people have ever been bestowed this honour – Vidal Sassoon, Trevor Sorbie MBE, and Ann Herman. It was of course, Errol Douglas MBE, who was announced as the latest legend to join this glowing list, as an incredibly passionate advocate for the Fellowship in the UK and beyond. He took to the stage, in front of hundreds of adoring peers and his two children, to accept the honour and express his gratitude.

The event also saw the new F.A.M.E. Team 2018 members announced; Ellie Bond from Spargo Hairdressing, Katie Prescott from Toni&Guy, Paddy McDougall from Rainbow Room International, and Peter Mellon from Medusa Hairdressing. Phillip Rogers also took to the stage as recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award, given to him for his unwavering dedication to the hairdressing industry. He took the opportunity to deliver a moving speech about the work that The Hairdressers Charity do and their importance in the industry, reminding the room of why everyone should be behind this brilliant charity.

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 As with every year, five industry professionals are named Fellow with Honours, along with one particularly dedicated individual named Fellow with Distinction. This year, Kevin Day from Alan d Hair, Susie Mutch from Sassoon, Neil Atkinson from Mahogany, Ashleigh Hodges from Jamie Stevens Hair, and Michael Young from Hooker & Young were awarded Fellow with Honours. Fellow with Distinction went to Vice President Andreas Stavrou. It was incredibly well deserved, with all the time and energy he puts into the Fellowship and the F.A.M.E. Team.

Jamie Stevens was named the Fellowship Hairdresser of the Year, a title he will carry throughout 2018, as well as being the star of the show at the Fellowship Hairdresser of the Year evening next November. Melissa Salons was named Individual Salon of the Year, Russell Eaton as Salon Group of the Year, and Sam Burnett took home the Terry Calvert Image of the Year award for his stunning ‘70s shag’ shot that won the hearts of the judges. Ken also introduced a brand-new award for 2017, the ‘Instagram Image of the Year’ award, given to the Image of the Year finalist photo that received the biggest response from the Fellowship’s Instagram followers, which went to Angelo Seminara for his gravity-defying image from his winning British Hairdresser of the Year collection.

The celebrations continued long into the evening at the Met Bar, as guests welcomed in the Christmas season, reflecting on a fantastic year for the Fellowship and the hairdressing industry. Roll on 2018!