Tourism businesses set for more plaudits

THE 2010 Suffolk Tourism Awards were launched at the Suffolk Show yesterday against a backdrop of increased optimism for the local industry.

The awards, now in their fourth year, are organised by Archant Suffolk, publishers of the East Anglian Daily Times and Evening Star, and sponsored by Choose Suffolk.

They provide a showcase for the county’s top tourism operators and underline the importance of an industry sector which contributes more than �1.5billion to the Suffolk economy.

Previous years have drawn more than 250 entries from tourism-related businesses.

Launching the awards at a breakfast hosted by the Country Land and Business Association and Haven Gateway Partnership, Donna Harvey-Arnell, Archant Suffolk advertising director, said despite the recent economic gloom there were rays of light for domestic tourism operators.

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With outward tourist departures falling by 12% and people choosing a ‘staycation’ in the UK, there were clear opportunities for the industry in this region, she said.

“As a business intimately involved with the local economy, I am clear about the benefits of partnership working and I am pleased that Choose Suffolk is once again supporting these awards.”

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Celia Hodson, chief executive of Choose Suffolk, said: “We’re delighted to be involved once again with these important awards that showcase and reward the high levels of dedication and commitment to excellence that the county’s tourism businesses demonstrate all-year round. These awards are also a great chance to acknowledge the value that tourism brings to Suffolk as one of the county’s key sectors, supporting thousands of employment opportunities and contributing �1.63bn to Suffolk’s economy.”

The Suffolk Tourism Awards are judged in 15 categories – including a people’s award – the winners of which go on to compete in the East of England Tourism regional finals with a chance of reaching the national Enjoy England awards.

They culminate in an awards dinner and presentation ceremony in September at Trinity Park.

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