It has become the highlight the academic calendar was crying out for - the annual Times Higher Awards ceremony.
About 1,200 entrants and guests were expected to join us at the Grosvenor House Hotel, in Park Lane, London, this week for The Times Higher 's third annual celebration of the outstanding successes of UK higher education.
With entries from 122 institutions this year, up from 82 last year, almost all of UK higher education is represented in some shape or form.
There are 19 award categories this year reflecting the astonishing achievements and sheer breadth of activity undertaken by those who work in our universities.
Three new awards were added this year: Marketing Initiative of the Year, Excellence and Innovation in the Arts and Outstanding ICT Initiative of the Year.
Thirty-five people in and associated with academe helped us with the formidable task of judging, and a range of organisations participated as sponsors, including the Higher Education Academy, the Arts Council and the Higher Education Funding Council for England.
Bill Rammell, the Higher Education Minister, and Lord Triesman, the Minister for Students, were among the guests of honour due to attend this year's event.
Speaking ahead of the event, Gerard Kelly, editor of The Times Higher , said: "The quality of entries and the breadth of activities universities are engaged in once again demonstrates what a vital role higher education plays in the UK."
This year's event was preceded by the inaugural Times Higher annual conference for strategic thought in higher education management.