World-class businesses from the county’s £3billion tourism industry are being urged to showcase their successes with the launch of the Cumbria Tourism Awards 2020.

There are 16 categories for firms to enter and the winners will be revealed at a ceremony at Cartmel Racecourse on July 15.

Tourism-related businesses, from restaurants, guesthouses and B&Bs to self-catering accommodation, hotels, retailers and visitor attractions/experiences are urged to throw their hats in the ring to vie for the top honours in 16 categories.

One of the standout accolades is the Shelia Hensman Award for an unsung hero, where businesses have the chance to recognise the hard work and dedication of a talented individual who goes the extra mile to create a world-class visitor experience.

All winners will be chosen by an independent panel of tourism experts and eligible winners of some categories will go forward to the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2021, for the chance to gain national recognition.

The Regent Hotel in Ambleside won Small Hotel of the Year in 2019.

Owner Andrew Hewitt said: “We’ve been here at Waterhead Bay for almost 40 years, and in that time we’ve witnessed so much growth and development in the tourism sector of the Cumbrian economy.

“The Cumbria Tourism Awards celebrate the best that our county has to offer and give us all a platform to showcase what we do best, so to be involved in something so prestigious was very exciting.”

Holiday Park of the Year was Keswick’s Castlerigg Hall Caravan, Camping and Glamping Park.

Owner David Jackson said: “We were thrilled to win the award, which we believe is a fabulous showcase for the tourism sector in our amazing county.

“Applying for the award gave us that additional motivation to keep us looking to improve on the service and product we offer, while recognising the hard work and dedication of our team here at Castlerigg Hall.”

Full details about how to enter and the application forms, entry criteria and terms and conditions can be found at The closing date for entries is February 17. Firms do not have to be a member of Cumbria Tourism.


  • Accessible and Inclusive Tourism Award
  • Large Hotel of the Year
  • Small Hotel of the Year
  • B&B and Guest House of the Year
  • Self-Catering Accommodation of the Year
  • Camping, Glamping & Holiday Park of the Year
  • Small Visitor Attraction of the Year
  • Pub of the Year
  • Taste of Cumbria Award
  • Ethical, Responsible & Sustainable Tourism Award
  • Experience of the Year
  • Makers and Producers Award
  • Wedding Venue of the Year
  • New Tourism Business Award
  • The Sheila Hensman Unsung Hero Award