Projects to integrate the call centres at the Royal Bank of Scotland and to produce a converged communications network at a college in Durham scooped the top prizes at the Techworld Network Awards at a gala dinner last night.

The awards, in their second year, honoured the leading teams, projects and products in the UK. The Royal Bank of Scotland award was to honour the company’s achievement in virtualising all the company’s existing call centres into one large one, enabling the company to handle many more calls.

The New College Durham project, which was co-ordinated by Telindus, integrated voice, data and video surveillance into a single network, meaning a considerable cost saving.

But let's not forget the other winners:

The best team in the UK was the technical support team at Astro Communications for the delivery of an MPLS system to Bourne Leisure. The winner of the best service provider of the year was, for the third year in a row, the virtual network operator, Vanco.

The product awards threw up a mixture of small and large companies, of well-established players and some start-ups.

The enterprise product of the year was won by for its Shout VoIP migration appliance, while the switch of the year was won by Extreme Networks for its Aspen 8800. For the first time, there was a category for best accelerator product, and it was snapped up by the relatively young Zeus Technology for its Extensible Traffic Manager.

There was some hot competition in the network management space, the winner of the award being Intelliden’s Physical Resource Manager, although Techworld editor, Maxwell Cooter said it had been the most-argued decision. The winner of the top troubleshooting tool was Network Instruments’ Observer suite.

In the mobile and wireless arena, winners included Trapeze’s MRX-2 for the top wireless product and Aventail for the Aventailex-1500 with ASAP 8.0 for the best mobility product. In a new category, Aruba won the best wireless security product with its Mobile Controllers.

There were two storage awards. The winner of the best hardware product was Adaptec for the Adaptec iSA1500 Storage Array, while the software champion was the BackupReport 3.5 from Bocada.

In the security section, BorderWare scored a success in the e-mail protection category with the MXtreme Mail Firewall. Kaspersky Labs won the best anti-virus product thanks to its Corporate Suite and the top intrusion detection/protection product was the ISG-2000 from Juniper. The network protection service of the year was the QualysGuard 3.4 from Qualys.

The winner of the best server product was Red Hat for Enterprise Linux 4 and the winner of the best cabling product was Fluke Networks for the CableIQ Qualification Tester.

The keenest competition is usually felt in the final award of the night - the Editors’ award for innovative technology. As usual there was much debate but the eventual winner was Zeus Technology for the Extensible Traffic Manager - its second award of the night.

And so another year's awards ends. We would like to thanks all those involved in the organising, running and sponsoring the event, plus of course the judges and all those that attended, making it a memorable evening. Until next year...