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Finalists Revealed for York Tourism Awards
Putting the spotlight on York’s Tourism Superstars

The spotlight will be turned on York’s tourism stars at this year’s York Tourism Awards in May and the finalists have been revealed today. Businesses from across the city; from hotels to restaurants, pubs to visitor attractions are all competing for an award in their respective categories. The annual tourism awards recognise the cream of the crop in tourism across the city.

Damian Cruden, Artistic Director at York Theatre Royal, helped announce the winners today. Current holder of the Tourism Ambassador title; awarded each year to an individual who consistently goes out of his or her way to ‘fly the flag’ for tourism in York, Damian was given the prestigious title in recognition of his commitment to bringing York stories to life, helping to put the city on an international stage. The winner of this year’s Tourism Ambassador title will be kept a closely guarded secret until the evening of the Awards on 8th May.

Kate McMullen, Head of Visit York, said ‘The Visit York Tourism Awards are a great opportunity for York’s tourism businesses to showcase the high standards being achieved in our world-class city. In a growing global tourism market, it’s vitally important we recognise and acknowledge excellence to ensure York retains its competitive edge.’

New this year is a public vote to decide on ‘York’s Best B&B’. For the first time, Visit York has launched an online campaign to encourage York fans who have stayed in the city to vote for their favourite guesthouse. A nationwide Twitter and Facebook campaign will encourage nominations and at or using the hashtag #faveyorkbnb up until midnight on 24th March. Finalists for the bed and breakfast category will then be revealed on 31st March, when public voting for the winner will commence.

A Black Tie Awards ceremony announcing all fourteen tourism awards winners will be held on Thursday 8th May in the nostalgic and unique setting of Station Hall at the National Railway Museum. Winners will have the opportunity to then go forward to the regional White Rose Awards and national VisitEngland Awards for Excellence. Sponsors signed up to support the Awards are: Saville AV, FR Fowler and Son, Leeds Bradford International Airport, Morrell Middleton and P&O Ferries.

And the Finalists are:

Visit York Tourism Awards 2014

Visitor Attraction of the Year – under 50,000 visitors

Goddards - National Trust

Quilt Museum and Gallery

York Cold War Bunker

York MotorSports Village

Yorkshire’s Winter Wonderland

Visitor Attraction of the Year – over 50,000 visitors

Beningbrough Hall, Gallery & Gardens

Castle Howard

National Railway Museum

North Yorkshire Moors Railway

York Maze

York Racecourse

Visitor Experience of the Year

JORVIK Viking Festival


Mallard75, National Railway Museum

York Cycle Tour - Scoot Cycling Holidays

Hallowscream - York Maze

Shopping Experience of the Year

Monk Bar Model Shop

Pandora York

York’s CHOCOLATE Story

York Cocoa House

York Does Vintage - Now and Then Group

Conference Venue of the Year

The Merchant Taylors Hall

National Railway Museum

Novotel York

York Conferences

York Racecourse

Hotel of the Year

Best Western York Pavilion Country House Hotel

The National Trust’s Middlethorpe Hall & Spa

Novotel York

The Parsonage Hotel & Spa

Raithwaite Hall

Caravan Park of the Year

Cawood Holiday Park

Naburn Lock Caravan Park

Robin Hood Caravan Park

Self Catering of the Year

The Dovecote Barns

High Dalby House Cottages

The Old Brewery

Old Gallery & Chamber Apartments

The Riverside - York

Wolds Edge Holiday Lodges & Shepherd Hut

Outstanding Customer Service Award

Greg Palmer – Best Western Monkbar Hotel

Marcus Naylor - The Golden Fleece

Sandra & David Wreglesworth - High Dalby House & Cottages

Jade Kelly - Holiday Inn York

Rebecca & Damian Palmer-Bunting - Robin Hood Caravan Park

Jeanette Hutchinson - York Marriott Hotel

Restaurant of the Year

El Piano

Lascelles Restaurant at the Parsonage Hotel & Spa

The Oak Room at Middlethorpe Hall & Spa

The Raj

The Whippet Inn Steak and Ale House

Cafe/Tearoom of the Year

Crumbs Cupcakery

El Piano


York Cocoa House

Pub/Bar of the Year

The Golden Fleece

Guy Fawkes Inn

House of the Trembling Madness

The Three Tuns

The Whippet Inn Steak and Ale House

Bed and Breakfast of the Year

Finalists to be announced 31 March

Tourism Ambassador

To be announced 8th May


Notes to Editors:

For further information please contact:

Kay Hyde – Head of PR and Communications – Visit York

Direct Line: 01904 554451

Mobile: 07506 048852


Katie Parsons – Senior Communications Executive – Visit York

Direct Line: 01904 554436


Visit York

Tourism Ambassador Award

This award goes to an individual who consistently goes out of his or her way to ‘fly the flag’ for tourism in York. The 2013 winner was Damian Cruden, Artistic Director at the York Theatre Royal, who with a strong belief in the power of storytelling has brought York stories to life, helping to put the city on an international stage.

2013 Visit York Tourism Award Winners

  • Hotel of the Year, Middlethorpe Hall & Spa
  • Guest Accommodation of the Year, Bishops
  • Self-catering/Caravan Park of the Year, Robin Hood Caravan Park
  • Restaurant of the Year, The Oak Room at Middlethorpe Hall & Spa
  • Café/Tearoom of the Year, York Cocoa House
  • Visitor Attraction of the Year, Beningbrough Hall & Gardens
  • Visitor Experience of the Year, York Mystery Plays 2012
  • Shopping Experience of the Year, Hotel Chocolat York
  • Marketing Campaign of the Year, Unlocking the Frankel Factor – York Racecourse
  • Conference Venue of the Year, National Railway Museum
  • Outstanding Customer Service Award, Alexandra Claydon & Samantha de la Tour – Now and Then Events
  • Pub/Bar of the Year – The People’s Choice Award, The Golden Fleece
  • York Tourism Ambassador, Damian Cruden – York Theatre Royal

About Visit York

  • Visit York is supported by the City of York Council and over 700 tourism businesses and works in partnership with VisitEngland.
  • Visit York’s aim is to market York as a must-see world-class destination to the leisure and business visitor, and ensure investment to develop the quality of tourism in York. Visit York is responsible for leisure and conference marketing, visitor services (running the city’s Visitor Information Centre), training and ensuring a quality visitor experience.
  • Visit York is the driving force of the city’s tourism industry. Key facts: 7 million visitors annually, £606 million total visitor spend, supporting 20,000 jobs