VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2016: Winners announced

By Emma Eversham contact

- Last updated on GMT

Rockliffe Hall, whose Spa Garden opened last year, won Best Large Hotel
Rockliffe Hall, whose Spa Garden opened last year, won Best Large Hotel

Related tags: England

Luxury hotel Rockliffe Hall and Worcestershire pub The Fleece Inn are among the winners of this year's VisitEngland Awards for Excellence.

The awards, held at Winter Gardens Blackpool last night (8 March), celebrated 16 winners in all with categories including Best Large Hotel and Taste of England.

Other hospitality businesses picking up awards were Yorebridge House hotel in, winner of Small Hotel category and country house hotel Eckington Manor in Worcestershire, winner of the Taste of England category. 

This year's awards, now in their 27th year, also saw the introduction of the Best Dog Friendly Business category and presented two additional awards - Outstanding Contribution to Tourism, which went to BBC's Countryfile and Tourism Superstar, awarded to Lilian Groves, senior guide at Durham Cathedral in Durham City. 

Award winners were picked from 80 finalists, 16 of which were Gold winners, 17 Silver, 16 Bronze and 31 Highly Commended. Winners were selected from a panel of tourism industry experts chaired by VisitEngland board member and chief executive of Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, John Hoy.

Sally Balcombe, CEO of VisitBritain and VisitEngland said the awards were designed to celebrate the best of English tourism.

"As ever competition has been fierce, with winners from the regions coming through to compete at a national level so my congratulations to all our winners, especially the Gold Award winners who are the standard bearers for English tourism," she said. 

Tourism Minister David Evennett added: “The success of our world-leading tourism industry is due to the passion and dedication of individuals across the country. “These awards highlight the huge talent we have, and the fantastic contribution winners and nominees have made to the sector, and I congratulate them all.”

VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2016: 

  • Access for All - ​Hoe Grange Holidays, Matlock, Derbyshire
  • Bed & Breakfast/ Guest Accommodation - ​Trevose Harbour House, St Ives, Cornwall 
  • Business Tourism - ​Crewe Hall, Crewe, Cheshire 
  • Dog Friendly Business - ​Higher Wiscombe, Colyton, Devon
  • Holiday Park/ Holiday Village - ​Woodovis Park, Tavistock, Devon
  • Large Hotel​ - Rockliffe Hall, Darlington, County Durham
  • Large Visitor Attraction - ​The Whitworth, The University of Manchester
  • Self Catering Holiday Provider - ​Treworgey Cottages, Looe, Cornwall
  • Small Hotel - ​Yorebridge House, Bainbridge, North Yorkshire
  • Small Visitor Attraction - ​Bombay Sapphire Distillery, Whitechurch, Hampshire
  • Sustainable Tourism - ​Railholiday, Saltash, Cornwall
  • Tourism Event - ​Liverpool City Council - Memories of August 1914, Liverpool
  • Tourism Experience - ​Livingstone Lodge Overnight Safari Experience, Ashford, Kent
  • Taste of England - ​Eckington Manor, Eckington, Worcestershire
  • Tourism Pub - ​The Fleece Inn, Bretforton, Worcestershire

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