IT was a case of third time lucky for one businessmen after he was named Business Person of the Year.

James Bancroft, the managing director of The ExcluSec Group Ltd, has been nominated for the award the last two years, but missed out on both occasions.

Mr Bancroft founded his firm, which has become The ExcluSec Group Ltd, in his front room eight years ago with nothing in his bank account and while working full-time as a cash machine engineer.

Today, his firm employs 150 people and has offices in Trafford Park and Warrington, as well as in Chorley New Road, and is continuing to grow.

From a desire to form a security company which was different to its competitors and cared for its own staff as well as clients, Mr Bancroft has built a professional organisation, which provides a range of tailored security services for private individuals, charitable organisations and corporate clients throughout the North West and the whole of the UK.

He puts his success down to never having a day off and never giving up, 'no matter how hard life became'.

Mr Bancroft regularly invests in the wellbeing and development of his staff, and is also regarded as an influential industry figure who promotes the latest technology and aids to improve security effectiveness and protect employees.

He also sits on the board of trustees of children’s bereavement charity Once Upon A Smile.

After receiving the award on Thursday night, Mr Bancroft said the award had come as a huge surprise.

“I'm speechless," he said. "I did not even have time to sit down and have a drink after the last one."

"I definitely did not expect to come away with two awards tonight, so this is a huge shock.

"It is great for all of the hard work to be recognised. I would like to thank all of my team for their nomination for the award and for all their hard work and support which has contributed significantly to the ExcluSec Group’s growth and success.”

The Market Place's centre manager, Nikki Wilson-Cook, was also highly commended by judges in the same category.

FULL COVERAGE - read the winners' stories

Editor's award - John Carr 

Business of the year - Darts Corner

Businessperson of the year - James Bancroft 

Apprentice of the year - Ellie Entwistle

Employer of the year - ExcluSec 

Manufacturer of the year - Pure Fabs 

Retailer of the year - Market Place 

Family business of the year - HCS 

Innovation award - Bolton College

Customer excellence award- Market Place

Not for profit - Bolton Young Person's  Housing Scheme 

Community award - Bolton Family 

SME business of the year - Handrail creations 

Start up of the year - A Year of Dates