Tourism businesses from across the North East were celebrated last night (Tuesday 22 November) as the winners for the North East England Tourism Awards were announced at a glittering ceremony held in Newcastle Civic Centre’s Banqueting Hall.
Alfie Joey, BBC Radio Newcastle breakfast show presenter, hosted the awards, which saw five new entrants walk away with gold awards including Battlesteads Hotel & Restaurant who won an outstanding three gold awards on the night.
This ensured a total of seven Gold awards for Northumberland, alongside winners Carraw Bed & Breakfast, St Cuthbert’s House, Northumbrian Water Kielder Waterside and Woodside Lodge.
All that glitters is not just gold. Northumberland businesses also scooped an impressive eight Silver, four Bronze and eight Highly Commended awards.
The full list of Gold winners:
Sarah Stewart, Chief Executive at destination management and marketing organisation NewcastleGateshead Initiative, said “Many congratulations to all of this year’s winners. It is always a delight to see so many businesses awarded for their commitment to the North East’s tourism sector.
“The North East of England has a fantastic tourism offer, from the buzz and culture of our cities to the beautiful heritage of our coast and countryside. This is demonstrated by the variety of businesses who have entered and won the awards.
“The next couple of years will be an exciting time for North East England as we build up to the Great Exhibition of the North, which will have a major impact on our visitor, and wider, economy. The Great Exhibition of the North is an opportunity to create a lasting legacy for the region and continue to develop our already strong visitor offer.”
Playing a major role in showcasing the range of high quality tourism businesses and experiences on offer to visitors across the North East, the awards have continued to grow year on year. Of the 143 entries this year, over 60 businesses (42% of entrants) entered the awards for the first time This year also saw the addition of three new categories; ‘Guided Tour of the Year’, ‘Self-Catering Property of the Year’ and ‘Dog Friendly Business of the Year’.
Winners at the regional awards have the chance to showcase their business and the North East on a national stage at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2017.
Andrew Stokes, VisitEngland Director said: “These awards are a fantastic showcase of the quality and sheer diversity of tourism products on offer across the North East of England. They are testament to the passion and commitment of businesses who are working so hard to develop the region’s visitor economy, driving growth from tourism across the country.”
Northumbrian Water continued their support of the awards for the fifth consecutive year, joined by Gateshead College as the headlines sponsors for 2016.
David Hall, Head of Leisure, Strategy & Transformation at NWG said: “The calibre of all entries was first class and I was particularly impressed by the strength of innovation and excellence we have across the North East.
“The region is quite rightly a destination of choice for tourists from across the UK and abroad and the winners have all played an important part in this. From spectacular coastlines, vibrant cities, fantastic heritage sites, to our own breath taking Kielder Waterside there truly is something for everyone to enjoy. My warmest congratulations to all the winners and those shortlisted. We are all immensely proud of this region and should celebrate such success.”
Ivan Jepson, director of business development at Gateshead College, said: “The North East Tourism Awards is a fantastic celebration of all the amazing experiences that our region has to offer and recognises those organisations that really go the extra mile for their guests – well done to all of the winners. We’re also very proud to have had some of our talented students work with NewcastleGateshead Initiative this year to help make the event a huge success.”
The North East England Tourism Awards are organised and delivered by NewcastleGateshead Initiative in partnership with the Northern Tourism Alliance.
The Northern Tourism Alliance is a collaboration of the region’s tourism bodies who work together on projects that will benefit the tourism industry across the region. The founding members of the alliance are NewcastleGateshead Initiative, Northumberland Tourism, Visit County Durham, and The North East Hotels Association. The Awards are also supported by Active Northumberland, South Tyneside Council, North Tyneside Council and Sunderland City Council.
Full list of winners
Boutique Accommodation/Small Hotel of the Year
Bed and Breakfast of the Year
Business Tourism Provider of the Year
Dog Friendly Business of the Year
Guided Tour of the Year
Holiday Park of the Year
Hotel of the Year
Inclusive Tourism Award
Large Visitor Attraction of the Year
Self-Catering Provider of the Year
Self-Catering Property of the Year
Small Visitor Attraction of the Year
Sustainable Tourism Award
Tourism Pub of the Year
Published: Wednesday 23/11/2016
By Visit Northumberland