Toy Shop UK reveals the 2021 Independent Toy Awards Winners

STEAM-inspired play, sustainability, and pop culture licensing have emerged as key themes among the winners of this year’s Independent Toy Awards, revealed this week by the awards’ organiser, Toy Shop UK.

The 14th annual iteration of the coveted awards, the ITA have been established in order to showcase what the nation’s independent toy retailer population consider to be some of the best products on the market.

The awards are unique within the industry because they are the only ones voted for by the nation’s indie toy retailers, who list themselves for free on the popular online directory.

Gold, Silver, and Bronze medal logos have been awarded in each of the 30 categories, with a number of suppliers receiving a ‘commendation’ logo for products that narrowly missed out on a top three place.

Among this year’s Gold medla winners, STEAM play, sustainability, and pop culture licensing have all emerged as keen trends. In the construction category, Greenscape Village from Arckit took home the Gold, lauded for delivering a building design tool that allows budding architects to explore their own creations while learning about architecture and the environment. Meanwhile, it was Build Your Own’s Mini Build range that took home the win in the Eco category.

Wow! Stuff chalked up another win in the Collectable category, where its Wow! Pods received praise for enabling kids and fans to build their own collection and connect to other Wow! Pods characters in seconds, while Kidicraft’s Harry Potter Plush & Puzzle secured the Gold in the Jigsaws & Puzzles category.

In the Licensed category, Ginger Fox’s Top Gear Board Game took its first place prize, while it was a solar powered Space Exploration kit from Funtime Gifts that secured the win in the STEAM category.

Toy Shop UK founder, Michael Hawkins, said: “This year’s list of winning toys features a truly diverse mix of products which I think perfectly reflects the life, characters, and occasionally eclectic nature of the independent toy retailers that bring so much to this industry.”

The Gold Medal Winners in this year’s Independent Toy Awards, are:

Advent Calendar: 1,2,3 Christmas Manger Advent Calendar – Playmobil

Baby: Family Hugs Photo Book – SES Creative

Children’s Gifts: Bath Time Unicorn World – Buddy and Barney

Collectable: Wow! Pods – Wow! Stuff

Creative: Illusion Cubes – The Happy Puzzle Company

Construction: Arckit Greenscape Village – Arckit

Dolls: Sparkle Girlz Hair Dreams – Zuru

Eco: Build Your Own Mini Build – Build Your Own

Educational: Toniebox – Tonies

Electronic: Marble Rush Adventure Set – VTech

Games (Action): The Sock Game – Asmodee

Games (Board): Go For Broke – John Adams

Games (Card): World Football Stars Top Trumps Quiz – Winning Moves

Games (Educational): Memory Matching Game (Beehive Toy Factory)

Jigsaws & Puzzles: Harry Potter Plush & Puzzle – Kidicraft

Licensed: Top Gear Board Game – Ginger Fox

Music: Mi Mic Mini Disco Cube Speaker – Wilton Bradley

Novelty: Magical Story Jars – Adventure Theme – Magical Story Jars

Outdoor: JumpKing 8’x12” Rectangular Combo Pro Trampoline – YJ Europe

Pocket Money: Galaxy Slime Play – Zimpli Kids

Preschool: Stick-O City Set – Magformers

Ride-On: TP Trike 4 in 1 – Mookie

Role Play: Doll Nursing Set – Le Toy Van

Soft: Blues Clues & You Peek A Boo Blue – Flair

Special Needs: 100 Piece Creative Pack – Connetix Tiles

STEAM: Solar SPace Exploration – Funtime Gifts

Vehicles: Fresh Metal Emergency Force Playset inc Playmat – H Grossman

Wooden: Wooden London Bus – Jaques of London

The full list of Silver and Bronze medal winners can be found here, as well as the list of companies to have received this year’s Commendation.

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of Licensing.biz and ToyNews. Hutchins has worked his way up from Staff Writer to the position of Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both ToyNews and Licensing.biz, and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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