Tuesday, July 9, 2024

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The prestigious Visit England Awards for Excellence 2024 took center stage on June 5 at the Rum Warehouse, Titanic Hotel Liverpool. The annual black-tie event, hosted by Lady Victoria Borwick, chair of Visit England, was attended by over 200 guests. The evening was recognized as the best in England’s tourism industry in 19 different categories.

The Visit England Awards for Excellence are recognized for showcasing unrivaled quality in England’s tourism sector. This year, the awards celebrated exceptional achievements in categories such as ‘Small Visitor Attraction of the Year,’ ‘B&B and Guest House of the Year,’ ‘Business Events Venue of the Year,’ and ‘Experience of the Year.’

Andrew Stokes, Director of Visit England, praised the winners and said, “The Visit England Awards for Excellence highlight the exceptional quality available across England. The passion and dedication of the individuals in this industry leads to customer service excellence, which was evident in every category.

From a wizard walk in York to a boutique hotel in East Sussex, and from a glamping site in Lancashire to a dinosaur adventure park in Norfolk, the awards highlight the diverse and high-quality tourism products England has to offer. Winners were selected from hundreds of tourism businesses across the country, each advanced through 16 local and regional competitions.

A night of recognition and celebration

The event was hosted by Alex Polizzi from Channel 5’s The Hotel Inspector, with Alan Dadicott, voice of the BBC’s National Lottery and Strictly Come Dancing, providing commentary on the finalists. The Visit England Awards for Excellence sponsored by the Caravan and Motorhome Club have been running for 35 years. They celebrate and champion innovation, quality and best practices in the industry.

In addition to the main categories, four special awards were presented, including the ‘Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award,’ ‘Travel Content Award,’ ‘Tourism Superstar Award,’ and the ‘TXGB Trailblazer Award.’ This year, the city of Liverpool was awarded the Outstanding Contribution to Tourism award for hosting the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest.

Significant impact of tourism on England’s economy

Tourism is an important part of England’s economy, supporting over 200,000 businesses and employing around 2.6 million people. In 2023, domestic visitor spending generated £70.2 billion. The Visit England Awards for Excellence 2024 highlighted the important role of tourism and commitment to maintaining high standards in the industry.

Visit England Awards for Excellence 2024 winners

Accessible and Inclusive Tourism Award:

  • Gold: Ho Grange Holidays, Derbyshire
  • Silver: ROARR!, Norfolk
  • Bronze: Colchester Castle, Essex

B&B and Guest House of the Year:

  • Gold: Bosham Boathouse B&B, West Sussex
  • Silver: Monkbridge House, North Yorkshire
  • Bronze: Bossington Hall, Somerset

Business Events Venue of the Year:

  • Gould: Telford International Centre, Shropshire
  • Silver: Warwick Conference, West Midlands
  • Bronze: Winter Gardens Blackpool, Lancashire

Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year:

  • Gold: The Secret Garden Glamping, Lancashire
  • Silver: Kits Coty Glamping, Kent
  • Bronze: Darwin Forest Lodge, Derbyshire

Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Tourism Award:

  • Gold: Mill Farm Eco Barns, Norfolk
  • Silver: Kent Wildlife Trust, Kent
  • Bronze: Vessel at Brodren, Cumbria

Years of Experience:

  • Gold: Gray Seal and Seabird Cruise, Serenity Farne Island Boat Tour, Northumberland
  • Silver: York Ghost Walk, The Deathly Dark Tours, North Yorkshire
  • Bronze: Mountain Bike Tester Day, Pure Outdoors, Derbyshire

Big Hotel of the Year:

  • Gold: The Grand, York, North Yorkshire
  • Silver: Hope Street Hotel, Merseyside
  • Bronze: Rockliffe Hall Hotel, County Durham

Small Hotel of the Year:

  • Gould: The Gallivant, East Sussex
  • Silver: Wilddive Callow Hall, Derbyshire
  • Bronze: at The Pig-Harlin Bay, Cornwall

New Tourism Business of the Year:

  • Gould: The Wizard Walk of York, North Yorkshire
  • Silver: Sleepy Owl Devon, Devon
  • Bronze: Boy’s Hall, Kent

Pub of the Year:

  • Gold: Peterville Inn, Cornwall
  • Silver: Acorn Inn, Dorset
  • Bronze: The Red Fox, Merseyside

Self-Catering Accommodation of the Year:

  • Gold: Sleepy Owl Devon, Devon
  • Silver: My cottage in St. Ives, Cornwall
  • Bronze: Bethnal and Beck, Hertfordshire

Small Visitor Attraction of the Year:

  • Gold: Nothe Fort, Dorset
  • Silver: Cotswolds Distillery, Warwickshire
  • Bronze: Battle of Britain Memorial, Kent

Taste of England Award:

  • Gold: Allium at Askham Hall, Cumbria
  • Silver: Blackfriars Restaurant, Tyne and Wear
  • Bronze: La Locanda, Lancashire

Big Visitor Attraction of the Year:

  • Gold: WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre, Gloucestershire
  • Silver: Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, Hertfordshire
  • Bronze: ROARR!, Norfolk

Unsung Hero Award:

  • Gold: Katie Calder, V-ATE Automotive Smokehouse and Bowl, Lincolnshire
  • Gould: Duncan Wise, Northumberland National Park Authority, Northumberland
  • Silver: Brett Hawkes, Crowhurst Park, East Sussex

Special Awards:

Tourism Superstars:

  • Winner: Pete Chambers, Coventry Music Museum, West Midlands

Travel Content Author:

  • Gold: Ben Aitken, The Guardian
  • Silver: Liz Edwards, The Times
  • Bronze: Richard Franks, JRNY Travel Magazine

TXGB Trailblazer Award:

  • Winner: National Lottery Days Out Campaign

Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award:

  • Winner: City of Liverpool, host of the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest

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