Ironbridge hairdresser wins national award

After opening her first salon, Ironbridge's Brooke Evans was hit with flooding and then Covid-19, but now she is reaching for the stars after winning a top industry award.

Brooke Evans
Brooke Evans

Brooke has demonstrated she has talent in abundance by earning a place on The It List, which spotlights the emerging stars in UK and Irish hairdressing aged 30 and under from organisation, Creative Head.

The salon owner is celebrating after winning the prestigious Entrepreneur of the Year award in the national competition.

The ambition it took her to transform a derelict garage in Ironbridge into an on-trend hair salon gave her the edge over a record-breaking number of entrants to win The Entrepreneur title, awarded to a young salon owner who’s created a successful, resilient business.

Based in Ironbridge, Brooke’s salon, BE Ironbridge, was a former garage but the intrepid stylist renovated the warehouse into a salon that pays homage to her local area.

The mechanic’s pit is now a wine cellar, the ceiling is papered with old magazines, the furniture upcycled and full of history. It’s a space that celebrates the old while making space for the new, including eco-friendly practices such as a product refill bar.

Brooke was announced as a winner at the Creative Head It List Grand Final, at Printworks London. In the audience were 600 A-Listers from the hair, fashion and media industries, who gathered to see the six It List trophies presented.

“The past 18 months have been a struggle for everyone, the hairdressing industry was definitely one of the hardest hit industries," Brooke said.

"When we initially opened the salon in December 2019 we were then hit by flooding and then by Covid and the various lockdowns that followed.

"It’s been great for us to be able to get back to normal and get back into the salon and to win the award for Entrepreneur of the Year is a massive achievement and something that I’m very proud of, I’m delighted to have been recognised among my industry peers."

After winning, Brooke will receive a bespoke education and inspiration mentor day with ghd creative artist Michelle Thompson and trade ambassador James Earnshaw, publicity in Creative Head for the duration of her winning year and the opportunity to appear at Creative Head events, providing a platform for career progression.

Catherine Handcock, publisher at Creative Head, said: “It takes guts to take on a project like Brooke did, and create a beautiful salon that tells such a rich and inspirational story. She is a thoroughly deserving of The Entrepreneur title.”

Creative Head deputy editor, Deborah Murtha added: “Taking on a new salon project might send most people running for the hills – but not Brooke!

"This superstar had the vision of this salon that encapsulates all the history and energy of the local area, and inspires others to rethink how they utilise new and old materials. She has created vision of the future – one which we can’t wait to see play out.”

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