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Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Dorset Tourism Awards 2020: Finalists from Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole

As they enter their eighth year, we take a look at the Dorset Tourism Awards finalists in our main patch…

This year’s Dorset Tourism Awards finalists have been announced, after the programme was extended to ten months.

The competition, which is in its eighth year, will end with its awards day, scheduled for 4th February. Although tourism has endured unprecedented times due to the pandemic, it is only right that the awards go ahead.

Clare Bushby of Clockwork Marketing, which sponsors the awards, said, “The Dorset Tourism Awards are more vital than ever before. They provide normality during a surreal time, where everything seems weighted against hospitality.”

There have been 91 entries this year, with an incredible 60 finalists who are now waiting to hear whether they have won gold, silver, or bronze. On top of that, a further nine entries will receive Commended status.

Below is a list of the awards and the finalists from Bournemouth, Christchurch, and Poole.

ACCESSIBLE AND INCLUSIVE TOURISM AWARD

sponsored by Yellow Buses

For this award, none of the finalists are based in Bournemouth, Poole, or Christchurch. However, Pause Cat Café in Bournemouth is receiving Commended status.

B&B AND GUESTHOUSE OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Goadsby

Mory House Bed & Breakfast in Southbourne shares the shortlist with establishments in Lyme Regis and Weymouth.

BUSINESS EVENTS & WEDDING VENUE OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Saffery Champness

Both finalists for this award are based in the BCP area. In Bournemouth, the Marsham Court Hotel is up for the accolade. Meanwhile, Poole’s finalist is Upton Country Park.

CAFÉ / TEAROOM OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Clipper

With this award comes a second appearance from Pause Cat Café. However, also up for Café / Tearoom of the Year is Picnic Park Deli in Bournemouth (find out more about their regular live music acts here). Meanwhile, Upton Country Park Tea Rooms is up for commendation.

CASUAL DINING AWARD

sponsored by Dorset Food & Drink

Out of three finalists, one comes from the BCP area. Oriel on the Quay in Poole, to be precise, which shares the shortlist with Fish ‘n’ Fritz in Weymouth and Swanage’s Peppina.

DOG-FRIENDLY BUSINESS OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Forthglade

As dog-friendly venues go, Bournemouth and Poole come up tops, if the finalists for this award are anything to go by. The Marsham Court Hotel and Upton Country Park add this to their list of nods in the 2020 Dorset Tourism Awards. But there’s also a commendation for Polygon Pets Ltd. in Poole.

ETHICAL, RESPONSIBLE & SUSTAINABLE TOURISM AWARD

sponsored by Bournemouth Water

Pause Cat Café in Bournemouth, once again, stands out at the Tourism Awards this year. Add another nomination to its ever-growing list — the only business among the finalists based in the BCP area. However, English Oak Vineyard in Poole get Commended status as part of this award.

EXPERIENCE OF THE YEAR (ACTIVE OR LEARNING)

sponsored by Dorset Tourism Association

One of two nominations for Shore Campers Campervan Hire in Bournemouth. A shortlist that they share with Fore / Adventure in Studland, and Jurassic Coast Guides in the village of Milborne St. Andrew.

HOTEL OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Saffery Champness

The Marsham Court Hotel lands another finalist position with this award – Hotel of the Year. However, they’re not alone on the shortlist. The RNLI College in Poole is also up for the accolade, alongside establishments in Bridport and Sherborne.

LARGE VISITOR ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Pear Communications

Smugglers Cove Adventure Golf on Bournemouth’s Pier Approach will face off against the famed Bovington Tank Museum for this particular award. They are the only two attractions to make the finals.

NEW TOURISM BUSINESS AWARD

sponsored by Visit Dorset

And now for Shore Campers Campervan Hire’s second nod. For the New Tourism Business Award, they come up against some stiff competition. In the forms of Hammoon Manor in Sturminster Newton, The Cross Keys pub in Sherborne, and The Tunnel Tree Tops in Charmouth.

RESTAURANT OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Dorset Food & Drink

Two new mentions from the BCP area in this category. First, there’s Moose Kitchen in Charminster — the restaurant offering hearty Canadian cuisine. And Zim Braai, specialists in African cuisine who opened their second restaurant last year on Bournemouth’s Poole Hill.

SMALL VISITOR ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR

sponsored by Resort Dorset

It’s another mention for English Oak Vineyard. But this time, they are fully-fledged finalists, alongside four other nominees. Including Nothe Fort in Weymouth and the Dorset Falconry Park.

UNSUNG HERO AWARD

sponsored by Clockwork Marketing

Coming to a more human perspective, we look at the Unsung Hero Award. First to mention is Heather Brown from the Dorset Foodie Feed. This source came particularly in handy last year at the start of lockdown, when no one was sure which restaurants, bars and hotels were offering takeaways and collections. Also up for this accolade are Yessica Falcon from the Bournemouth Tourist Information Centre, and (from further afield) Kellie Court from the Tangerine Café and Gallery in Beaminster.

Meanwhile, the winners for the International Visitor Experience of the Year will be announced on the awards day itself. There are several other awards and nominees from outside the BCP area too. Click here for the full list.

To keep up with the Dorset Tourism Awards and their latest news, visit their website. For more local Tourism stories, click here. Also, don’t forget to follow HQB News on our social channels. You can find us on FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and YouTube.

Dan Rushton
Dan Rushton
Dan is a Birmingham-born lad who moved down to Brighton in the summer of 2019 to pursue a career in PR within the entertainment technology industry. The events industry was hit hard by the Coronavirus pandemic. In March 2020 he made the move to Bournemouth and intends to stay here to try take his career further. He has always been a keen writer and talker, describing himself as confident, funny and outgoing. His interests include politics, football, art, music and live entertainment. He has been with HQB since June 2020.

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