Cumbrian Tourism Businesses Win National Tourism Excellence Awards

On Monday 11th May the cream of England’s tourism industry toasted the success of the finalists nominated in this year’s VisitEngland Award for Excellence 2015. The presentations were made at a glittering black tie dinner at the Sage Gateshead.

The evening showcased the fantastic range of high quality experiences on offer for visitors throughout England. The Awards have had a hugely positive impact on tourism in England providing a benchmark for all businesses to aspire to and delivering massive benefits to participants and winners alike. This year 75 finalists; 15 Gold winners, 15 Silver winners, 15 bronze winners and 30 highly commended were selected from a total of 345 entries, representing tourism businesses across England. Winners were chosen by a panel of tourism industry experts and chaired by VisitEngland Board Member and Chief Executive of the Blenheim Estate in Oxfordshire, John Hoy.

Four Cumbrian businesses eagerly awaited the results to find out if they were in the running for a gold, silver, bronze or highly commended award. The four Cumbrian finalists, the categories they were nominated for and the awards they received are as follows:

  • Best Tourism Experience of the Year Award – Treetop Trek Ltd, Windermere – Gold
  • Best Tourism Pub Award  – Wild Boar Inn, Grill & Smokehouse Windermere – Silver
  • Best Small Attraction of the Year Award – Stott Park Bobbin Mill: English Heritage Finsthwaite – Silver
  • Best Small Hotel Award – Cedar Manor Hotel & Restaurant, Windermere – Highly Commended

 Other Cumbrian businesses were also out in force, representing the county at the awards.  That included Gilpin Hotel and Lake House’s new head chef Hrishikesh Desai, winner of BBC2’s Chefs on Trial, who accepted the Outstanding Contribution Award on behalf of the ‘Chefs of England’. This recognised the “exceptional contribution” of chefs nationally to England’s tourism industry.

VisitEngland Chairman, Lady Cobham CBE, said: “The VisitEngland Awards for Excellence – this year hosted at the wonderful Sage Gateshead – celebrate the very best in English tourism. It is the highest accolade and recognises the true champions of our industry, as well as the top quality visitor experiences we are fortunate to have on offer in England. The competition is of an increasingly high standard and so I offer my sincere congratulations to all our winners on this tremendous achievement, particularly the Gold Award winners for their exemplary contribution to tourism in this country.”

Ian Stephens Managing Director of Cumbria Tourism said: ‘’It is extremely important for our tourism businesses to be recognised by their peers both locally and nationally. Each year the winners from the annual Cumbria Tourism Awards qualify to enter the national VisitEngland Awards for Excellence. I’m delighted and very proud to say that this year is no exception with businesses from across Cumbria successfully representing the county at these prestigious national awards. Many congratulations and thanks to Tree Top Trek, Wild Boar Inn, Grill & Smokehouse, Stott Park Bobbin Mill and Cedar Manor Hotel & Restaurant for putting the Lake District on the map yet again”

Associated imagery for all the shortlisted businesses can be downloaded here:


Notes to editors

  1.  For further information please contact Cumbria Tourism Press Office on 01539 825075 or on
  2. Cumbria Tourism is the lead organisation for tourism in the county and is at the heart of the Cumbria Visitor Economy.  It is also the largest membership organisation in Cumbria with more than 2,600 members.  Over 41.5 million annual visitors to Cumbria contribute more than £2.44 billion to the local economy and support around 58,327 jobs.  To find out more about the work of Cumbria Tourism, visit
  3. To book accommodation in Cumbria – the Lake District, visit

For further information

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01539 822222 or