Best pub, best restaurant, best hotel… Meet the York tourism award winners 2020

Ben Fry and Laura Castle from Minster FM host the Visit York awards 2020. Photograph: David Dunning
24 Apr 2020 @ 12.01 am
| Business

The best in York’s tourism sector have been championed at a unique awards ceremony.

Fourteen of the city’s businesses celebrated a win in the first ever virtual Visit York Tourism Awards last night (Thursday, 23rd April) – you can see all the winners below.

They were announced on the Visit York social media channels and via a special live broadcast on Minster FM, compered by breakfast show hosts Ben Fry and Laura Castle.

Video courtesy of David Dunning at Minster FM

The awards, sponsored by LNER, celebrate the very best of York’s shops, pubs, hotels, restaurants, attractions and more – rewarding quality, innovation and customer service.

New categories introduced for this year included ‘Event of the Year’ which was scooped by York Maze Hallowscream, the ‘Taste of York Award’ won by Roots York, and ‘Accessible & Inclusive Tourism Award’ which was picked up on the night by the Jorvik Group of Attractions.

And Ben Fry – awards co-host, Minster FM breakfast presenter, and York town crier – was named Tourism Champion of the Year 2020!

Important celebration

The Grand Hotel. Photograph: YorkMix

Other winners for the night included The Grand, York who were crowned ‘Large Hotel of the Year’, Grays Court Hotel for ‘Small Hotel of the Year’ and Castle Howard for ‘Large Visitor Attraction of the Year’.

The title of ‘Pub of the Year’ went to The Drovers Arm Country Pub & Restaurant and ‘Shop of the Year’ to York Gin.

MD of Make It York Sean Bullick said: “Now, more than ever, it’s important for us to come together and celebrate the achievements of the industry – and so we were delighted to be able to put together this virtual awards ‘ceremony’ with the help of Minster FM to ensure businesses still get the recognition they deserve.”

Bridget Meynell, MD of Minster FM, said the station was delighted to help. “The live show was even more accessible, as everyone in the city and beyond had the chance to celebrate with the York tourism businesses that work so hard to make our beautiful city so welcoming.”

Many of the winners will go forward to the national VisitEngland Awards for Excellence which are also being held virtually later in the year.  

The winners

Mad Alice, aka Alicia Stabler, wins for The Bloody Tour of York

B&B and Guest House of the Year
 Woodlands Farm Thimbleby
Finalists: No.21 York

Business Events Venue of the Year
Winner: The Grand, York
York Barbican
York Racecourse

Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year
 Vale of Pickering Caravan Park
Wolds Edge Holiday Lodges
York Holiday & Cycle Stop

Experience of the Year
 The Bloody Tour of York
Highly Commended: The Cookery School at The Grand, York
Castle Howard
Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience

Event of the Year
 York Maze Hallowscream
Highly Commended: York Minster – The Northern Lights
JORVIK Viking Festival

International Tourism Award
 The Grand, York
Finalists: OE Media

Large Hotel of the Year
Winner: The Grand, York
Grantley Hall
Hotel Indigo York
The Principal Hotel

Large Visitor Attraction of the Year
 Castle Howard
JORVIK Viking Centre
National Railway Museum

New Tourism Business of the Year
Winner: Grantley Hall
Northwood Trail, England’s Fairy Sanctuary
OE Media
Yorkshire Appetite Food Tours

Pub of the Year
 The Drovers Arms Restaurant & Country Pub
House of Trembling Madness (Lendal)
The Ackhorne
The Botanist York

Self Catering Accommodation of the Year
Winner: Wolds Edge Holiday Lodges
Serenity Inn the City
The Enchantment Chamber

Shop of the Year
Winner: York Gin
Highly Commended: Bluebird Bakery
The Balloon Tree Farmshop & Café
The Shop That Must Not Be Named

Small Hotel of the Year
Winner: Grays Court Hotel
Dean Court Hotel
The Parisi Hotel

Small Visitor Attraction of the Year
Winner: Energi Trampoline Park
Barley Hall
Locked in Games York
Mother Shipton’s Cave
York Army Museum

Taste of York Award
Winner: Roots, York
Highly Commended: The Whippet Inn
Plush Café
The Star Inn The City
The York Roast Co

Accessible & Inclusive Tourism Award
Winner: Jorvik Group of Attractions

Tourism Champion of the Year 2020
Ben Fry