Titanic Hotel, Sunnyside Guest House and St John’s Bombed Out Church among Finalists announced for VisitEngland Awards for Excellence

VisitEngland has today 27 April announced the finalists who will go forward to compete for the tourism industry’s annual national Awards for Excellence, including Liverpool’s Titanic Hotel, Sunnyside Guest House and St Luke’s Bombed Out Church.

The 48 finalists, announced following a rigorous judging process by handpicked tourism industry experts, now go on to compete in 16 core categories at the national awards, with the Caravan and Motorhome Club announced as headline sponsor. The awards’ categories range from ‘Small Visitor Attraction of the Year’ and ‘B&B and Guest House of the Year’ to ‘Business Events Venue of the Year’ and ‘Experience of the Year’.

The VisitEngland Awards for Excellence champion the very best of the country’s tourism industry celebrating quality, innovation, best practice and exceptional customer service.

VisitEngland Director Andrew Stokes said:

“This impressive list of finalists demonstrates the innovation and excellence thriving across England’s tourism industry. The quality and number of applications also highlights the outstanding range of products and experiences on offer for both domestic and international visitors. We wish the finalists the very best of luck.”

Applications to the awards were put forward for judging from businesses including hotels, self-catering accommodation providers, B&Bs, glamping operators, visitor attractions, restaurants, pubs and museums.

In addition to the 16 core categories, four special awards are also being presented this year including an ‘Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award,’ a ‘Travel Content Award’, a ‘Tourism Superstar Award’ and a ‘TXGB Trailblazer’ Award.

All finalists are invited to attend the national awards ceremony, this year being held at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter on 7 June, where Gold, Silver and Bronze winners will be announced at the black tie event. The Family Holiday Charity is the chosen charity for this year’s event.

This year’s Awards aligned with 16 local competitions from across England with winners automatically put forward for the national awards.

Tourism is one of England’s largest and most valuable industries, supporting hundreds of thousands of businesses, employing about 2.6 million people and, in 2019, generating £76 billion in domestic visitor spending.

VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2023 – List of Finalists:

Accessible and Inclusive Tourism Award:

Brickhouse Farm Holiday Cottages & Lakeside Hub, Lancashire www.brickhousecottages.co.uk

Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm, Bristol www.noahsarkzoofarm.co.uk

WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre, Gloucestershire www.wwt.org.uk/wetland-centres/slimbridge

B&B and Guest House of the Year:

Cedar Manor, Cumbria www.cedarmanor.co.uk

Piglets Boutique B&B, Essex www.piglets.co.uk

Sunnyside Guest House, Merseyside www.sunnysidesouthport.co.uk

Business Events Venue of the Year:

Imago Venues, Leicestershire www.imagovenues.co.uk

National Memorial Arboretum, Staffordshire www.thenma.org.uk/hold-your-event/the-aspects-building

The ICC Birmingham, West Midlands www.theicc.co.uk

Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year:

Brook Meadow, Leicestershire www.brookmeadow.co.uk

Hendra Holiday Park, Cornwall www.Hendra-holidays.com

The Quiet Site, Cumbria www.thequietsite.co.uk

Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Tourism Award:

National Forest EBike Holidays, Leicestershire www.ebikeholiday.co.uk

Pure Outdoor, Derbyshire www.pureoutdoor.co.uk

The Cottages at Blackadon Farm, Devon www.cottagesatblackadonfarm.co.uk

Experience of the Year:

Peak District Walking Experience, myGuidedWalks, Peak District www.myguidedwalks.co.uk

Grey Seal and Seabird Cruise, Serenity Farne Island Boat Tours, Northumberland www.farneislandstours.co.uk

Make Your Own Gin Experience, Shed 1 Gin Distillery, Cumbria www.shed1distillery.com

Large Hotel of the Year:

Bowood Hotel, Spa and Golf Resort, Wiltshire www.bowood.org/hotel

Rockliffe Hall Hotel, Golf & Spa Resort, County Durham www.rockliffehall.com

Titanic Hotel Liverpool, Merseyside www.titanichotelliverpool.com

Large Visitor Attraction of the Year:

Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire www.blenheimpalace.com

International Bomber Command Centre, Lincolnshire www.internationalbcc.co.uk

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, Hertfordshire www.wbstudiotour.co.uk

New Tourism Business of the Year:

Bassenthwaite Lake Station, Cumbria www.bassenthwaitelakestation.com

Great British Car Journey, Derbyshire www.greatbritishcarjourney.com

Thorington Theatre, Suffolk www.thoringtontheatre.co.uk

Pub of the Year:

The Blind Bull, Derbyshire www.theblindbull.co.uk

The Duncombe Arms, Staffordshire www.duncombearms.co.uk

The Shoe, Hampshire www.theshoeexton.co.uk

Resilience and Innovation Award:

Healing Manor Hotel, Lincolnshire www.healingmanorhotel.co.uk

Langley Castle Hotel, Northumberland www.langleycastle.co.uk

St Luke’s Bombed Out Church C.I.C., Merseyside www.slboc.com

Self Catering Accommodation of the Year:

Eaton Manor Country Estate, Shropshire www.eatonmanor.co.uk

Kidlandlee Holiday Cottages, Northumberland www.kidlandlee.co.uk

The Dovecote Barns, North Yorkshire www.dovecotebarnsyork.co.uk

Small Hotel of the Year:

Askham Hall, Cumbria www.askhamhall.co.uk

THE PIG-at Combe, Devon www.thepighotel.com/at-combe/

Wildhive Callow Hall, Derbyshire www.wildhive.uk

Small Visitor Attraction of the Year:

Muncaster Castle, Gardens and Hawk & Owl Centre, Cumbria www.muncaster.co.uk

PK Porthcurno, Cornwall www.pkporthcurno.com

Watatunga Wildlife Reserve, Norfolk www.watatunga.co.uk

Taste of England Award:

Pensons Restaurant at the Netherwood Estate, Worcestershire www.pensons.co.uk

The Glasshouse Restaurant, Hampshire www.oakleyhall-park.com/dine-drink/glasshouse-restaurant/

The Unruly Pig, Suffolk www.theunrulypig.co.uk

Unsung Hero Award:

Michael Wilson, Official Guide to the Kent Estuary, Guide Over Sands Trust, Cumbria

Carol Adams, Head of Horticulture & Biodiversity, Trentham, Staffordshire

Marie Colgrave, Welcome Building Supervisor, Whitchurch Silk Mill, Hampshire

The TXGB Trailblazer Award:

Cotswolds Tourism, Cotswolds www.cotswolds.com

New Adventures, Tyne & Wear & Northumberland www.newadventures.org.uk

Red Funnel, Isle of Wight www.redfunnel.co.uk

Travel Content Award:

Paul Healy, Anywhere We Roam – A wild getaway in Swaledale – the unspoilt valley in the Yorkshire Dales

Ben Lerwill, National Geographic Traveller – How art and ancient history collide on a hike through Deal, Dover and Folkestone

Alicia Miller, The Independent – How to do a classic Cotswolds weekend, car-free

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