Nominations welcome for top Peak tourism awards

Chatsworth
Chatsworth

Mainstays of the local tourism industry are getting another well-deserved chance to step into the limelight thanks to Visit Peak District & Derbyshire’s prestigious annual awards scheme.

Nominations are now being accepted for the Excel Tourism Awards 2012, co-ordinated by the official tourist board to recognise and reward individuals who pull out all the stops to offer five-star service.

Entries can be submitted in nine categories:

Apprentice of the Year

Student of the Year

Young Manager of the Year

Young Chef of the Year

Event Planner of the Year

Volunteer of the Year

Outstanding Customer Care

Team of the Year

Unsung Hero

Finalists will be chosen by an independent panel of judges, and this year, for the first time, entries for Outstanding Contribution to Tourism will be invited and shortlisted directly by the Visit Peak District & Derbyshire Board.

Next year’s event will once again be hosted by Chatsworth, compered by Colin Sykes, Environment and Transport Correspondent for BBC North West Tonight, and will be held on Thursday March 8.

“Each year our Excel Tourism Awards Scheme put the spotlight on the people who work so hard to offer the highest possible standards of service, rather than the organisations they work for,” said David James, the tourist board’s Chief Executive.

“I’m very pleased that Chatsworth is once again able to host the evening, when we will all have the opportunity to celebrate all that’s best about our talented local workforce.

“Tourism makes a vital contribution to the Derbyshire economy – now worth more than £1.5 billion a year and supporting 25,000 jobs – and our Awards highlight all those who share our passion for offering visitors the best quality experience we can.

“They also underline the message that it’s vital for businesses to invest in their employees through quality improvement, staff training and skills development, and hopefully encourage other employers to follow their lead.

“Anyone employed in tourism is eligible – from all-rounders whose often unseen efforts make all the difference to the day-to-day running of a business to high flyers just starting out or have achieved outstanding results during a long career.

“I hope as many people as possible will get in touch to let us know who they think should be recognised and rewarded in what promises to be a milestone year, thanks to the London Olympics 2012 and Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee.”

The Duke of Devonshire added: “The Excel Tourism Awards are a great opportunity to reward people who work tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure that visitors have the best possible experience.

“We are delighted that the Awards will take place at Chatsworth for the third year in a row, and look forward to welcoming colleagues from Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, sponsors and guests to what has become a key event in the county’s calendar.”

The Excel Tourism Awards 2012 will once again be hand crafted from Derbyshire sourced products by Ashbourne-based jewellers CW Sellors.

Nominations can be made by visiting www.visitpeakdistrict.com/excel, downloading and completing a nomination form, and e-mailing it or posting it to Lindsay Rae, Quality and Business Development Manager at Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, Commerce Centre, Canal Wharf, Chesterfield, Derbyshire S41 7NA, 01246 212924 ext 2903, email lindsay.rae@visitpeakdistrict.com. The closing date for entries is Friday January 20.