EDP Tourism Awards
The winners of the eighth Eastern Daily Press Tourism Awards were toasted tonight at a presentation event at Norwich City Football Club.
While Holkham Hall and Wroxham Barns both scooped two awards, the former director of Norfolk Tourism, Lydia Smith, became the first female winner of the outstanding achievement award.
Opening the evening, EDP editor Nigel Pickover said all the finalists deserved to be winners – each playing their own important role inNorfolk’s £2.5 billion a year tourism economy which was 30pc bigger thanCornwall’s.
He said: “Welcome to our awards which celebrate the unrivalled wealth of attractions in our wonderful part of the world.
“Our region is blessed with stunning locations visited by hundreds of thousands of people each year and my title, from its print editions to its online platforms, is delighted to support all those who work in the growing tourism industry.”
Simon Altham, a director of awards sponsor Hoseasons, paid tribute to MBE recipient Brian Potter, architect of Potter’s Leisure Resort in Hopton, before treating guests to a premiere of the company’s new £1m television advert ahead of its Boxing Day launch on the small screen.
The commercial – shot entirely inNorfolk- won instant approval from the county’s leading tourism players with its shots of the Broads, northNorfolkand Waxham beach.
Following the washout summer, Mr Altham urgedNorfolk’s tourism industry to “embrace the weather and build our businesses so we can cater for visitors come rain and shine”.
He also issued a rallying cry forEast Anglia’s tourism businesses to work together across political and geographical boundaries to sell the region to visitors.
Mr Altham also announced Ms Smith as the unanimous choice for the outstanding achievement award for her contribution to tourism going back to the 1980s.
She was behind the creation of the Norfolk Tourism Management Partnership in 1995 and over the next 10 years helped to develop Norfolk Tourism into a true partnership between public and private sectors.
The winners of the other 13 awards were nominated by the public and tourism businesses and selected by judges from Archant and the sponsors after a round of searching inspection visits.