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South West’s 26 Awards make it top England region for 4th year running

South West England was the bigger winner at this year’s national VisitEngland awards ceremony in Blackpool on Tuesday night, with 26 Awards overall including 5 Gold awards, 7 Silvers and 4 Bronzes.

80 awards were announced on the night, and with 26 of these from the South West the region reinforced its position as the top English region for quality tourism.

The Visit England awards link with the South West Tourism Excellence Awards which held its regional awards ceremony in Exeter Cathedral on 4th February this year.  This followed a rigorous selection process, including judging of 490 entries from across the South West with many of them winning also in the Cornwall Tourism Awards, Dorset Tourism Awards and Devon Tourism Awards. Over the winter the regional entries have been pitted against further entries from across the country, with 26 South West nominees selected as Finalists at the VisitEngland awards night in at The Winter Gardens in Blackpool on Tuesday 8th March.

Devon Gold winners were Woodovis Park for Holiday Park / Village and Higher Wiscombe for Dog Friendly, whilst Cornwall picked up Golds for Treworgey Cottages for Self Catering, Trevose Harbour House for Bed & Breakfast and Railholiday for Sustainable Tourism.

Silver awards went to Cornwall’s The Dining Room, Devon’s River Cottage HQ and Calvert Trust Exmoor, Somerset’s Cross Lane House Hotel & Restaurant, Brunel’s ss Great Britain in Bristol, Bath’s Roman Baths and Pump Room and Gloucester Tourist Information Centre.

Recipients of valued Bronze awards were Hell Bay Hotel from the Isles of Scilly, Cornwall’s Whalesborough Cottages and Pebble House Boutique Guest House, and Dartington Hall in Devon.

Also winners on the night were 10 businesses picking up Highly Commended accolades.  From Wiltshire there was Salisbury Cathedral and from Gloucestershire Tudor Farmhouse.  Devon Highly Commended winners were Highbullen Hotel Golf & Country Club, Kentisbury Grange, The Guardhouse Café, The Swan at Bampton and Salcombe Harbour Hotel and Spa.  From Cornwall there was Padstow Touring Park, Wheal Martyn Museum and The Rising Sun pub.

South West Awards organiser Robin Barker, who joined the winners in Blackpool, commented: “This year’s awards have broken all records with 1/3 of the national awards going to South West businesses.  It is a fitting testament to their vision, investment and hard work – making sure that this region stays at the cutting edge in one of the biggest and fastest changing industries in the world.  As one cycle ends another begins, and we are already planning the 2016/16 Awards, to be launched in April, along with a few changes.”

ACCESS FOR ALL AWARD

SILVER                                  Calvert Trust Exmoor, Kentisbury, Devon  www.calvert-trust.org.uk/exmoor

SILVER                                  The Roman Baths, Bath  www.romanbaths.co.uk

TOURISM EXPERIENCE OF THE YEAR      

SILVER                                  River Cottage HQ, Musbury, Devon  www.rivercottage.net

B&B / GUEST ACCOMMODATION OF THE YEAR

GOLD                                    Trevose Harbour House, St Ives, Cornwall  www.trevosehouse.co.uk

BRONZE                               Pebble House, Mevagissey, Cornwall  www.pebblehousecornwall.co.uk

BUSINESS TOURISM AWARD

BRONZE                               Dartington Hall, Dartington, Devon  www.dartingtonhall.com

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Highbullen Hotel Golf & Country Club, Umberleigh, Devon  www.highbullen.co.uk

DOG FRIENDLY BUSINESS OF THE YEAR

GOLD                                    Higher Wiscombe, Colyton, Devon  www.higherwiscombe.com

HOLIDAY PARK / VILLAGE OF THE YEAR

GOLD                                    Woodovis Park, Gulworthy, Devon  www.woodovis.com

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Padstow Touring Park, Padstow, Cornwall  www.padstowtouringpark.co.uk

LARGE HOTEL OF THE YEAR

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Salcombe Harbour Hotel & Spa, Salcombe, Devon  www.salcombe-harbour-hotel.co.uk

LARGE VISITOR ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR

SILVER                                  Brunel's ss Great Britain, Bristol  www.ssgreatritain.org

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Salisbury Cathedral, Salisbury, Wiltshire  www.salisburycathedral.org.uk

SELF CATERING HOLIDAY PROVIDER OF THE YEAR

GOLD                                    Treworgey Cottages, Liskeard, Cornwall  www.cornishdreamcottages.co.uk

BRONZE                               Whalesborough Cottages, Bude, Cornwall  www.whalesborough.co.uk 

SMALL HOTEL OF THE YEAR        

SILVER                                  Cross Lane House Hotel, Minehead, Somerset  www.crosslanehouse.com

BRONZE                               Hell Bay Hotel, Isles of Scilly  www.hellbay.co.uk

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Kentisbury Grange, Barnstaple, Devon  www.kentisburygrange.com

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Tudor Farmhouse, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire  www.tudorfarmhousehotel.co.uk

SMALL VISITOR ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR

HIGHLY COMMENDED   Wheal Martyn, St Austell, Cornwall  www.wheal-martyn.com

SUSTAINABLE TOURISM AWARD                             

GOLD                                    Railholiday Ltd, Saltash, Cornwall  www.railholiday.co.uk

TASTE OF ENGLAND AWARD

SILVER                                  The Dining Room restaurant, Rock, Cornwall  www.thediningroomrock.co.uk

HIGHLY COMMENDED   The Guardhouse Café, Brixham, Devon  www.guardhousecafe.com

TOURISM PUB OF THE YEAR

HIGHLY COMMENDED   The Swan, Bampton, Devon  www.theswan.co

HIGHLY COMMENDED   The Rising Sun, Truro, Cornwall  www.risingsuntruro.co.uk

VISITOR INFORMATION PROVIDER OF THE YEAR              

SILVER                                  Gloucester Tourist Information Centre, Glos  www.thecityofgloucester.co.uk