Lancashire Tourism Awards winners announced

Twenty of the county’s finest tourism businesses have been awarded for excellence at the 10th annual Lancashire Tourism Awards.

Lancashire Tourism winnersThis year’s awards ceremony was the biggest to date, with more categories, more applications and more finalists. A number of new categories were amongst the most popular, including Best Wedding Venue, Best for Groups, Retail Experience, Cultural Venue/Organisation, Luxury Experience.

The Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award went to all 250 Guilders of the Preston Guild 2012; volunteers who welcomed over one million visitors to Preston and ensured the smooth-running and success of this ‘once every twenty years’ event.

Ruth Connor, chief executive of organisers Marketing Lancashire, said: “All our finalists are deserving of recognition but our winners today have demonstrated that they are the ‘best of the best’ of Lancashire’s tourism businesses and I congratulate them.

“Tourism is of vital importance to the economic good health of Lancashire and our finalists and winners are at the forefront of a drive to improve the industry’s current £3.4bn contribution to the visitor economy, which Marketing Lancashire will proudly continue to lead and develop, through creative partnerships and strategic and ambitious marketing.”

The ceremony was hosted by Simon Calder, senior travel editor of The Independent, TV and radio broadcaster, with a Lancashire inspired three-course dinner created by Blackburn-based caterers With A Twist.

The event was directed and managed by Fettle Events with Marketing Lancashire and was the first event of its kind ever held at Blackburn Cathedral. Award-winning cheesemaker Dewlay, provided one of the ingredients for the menu, as well as a three tier celebration cheese-cake, and a special beer from Blackburn brewers Thwaites was available to guests at the drinks reception.

Guests also enjoyed live music entertainment from Blackburn and Darwen Brass Band, and the Lancashire Jazz Youth Orchestra.

Winners this year received a newly designed trophy; a handcrafted, distinctive glass wave design, featuring the Lancashire rose created by Stonegate Glass Studio.

Full list winners:

B&B/Guest Accommodation Award The Cartford Inn, Little Eccleston

Small Hotel Award The Stirk House Hotel, Gisburn

Large Hotel Award Holiday Inn Express Burnley

Holiday Park Award Bay View Holiday Park, Bolton le Sands

Self Catering Award Canal Boat Cruises, Hoghton

Green Tourism Award Bleasdale Cottages

Conference/Meeting Venue Award Brockholes, Preston

Wedding Venue Award Eaves Hall, Clitheroe

Luxury Experience Award The SPA Hotel at Ribby Hall Village, Wrea Green

Taste Lancashire Award The Parkers Arms, Clitheroe

Tourism Pub Award The Assheton Arms, Clitheroe

Cultural Venue/Organisation Award The Dukes Theatre, Lancaster

Best for Groups Award Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Small Visitor Attraction Award Lancaster Canal Boats

Large Visitor Attraction Award Blackpool Zoo

Retail Experience Award Cedar Farm, Mawdesley

Visitor Event Award Lancaster Music Festival

Customer Service Award Sandcastle Waterpark, Blackpool

Marketing Initiative Award Blackpool Resort Pass Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award Guilders of Preston Guild 2012