Pub bosses were delighted after striking gold for a second time at the North East England Tourism Awards.
The glitzy bash at Newcastle United’s St James Park saw businesses from across the region gather to celebrate some of the best firms who are helping to bring visitors into the region and offer them a great experience while they are staying.
The Feathers, at Hedley on the Hill in Northumberland, took top spot in the ceremony’s Taste of Britain category to add to its Tourism Pub of the Year recognition in 2012.
While the South Causey Inn, in Stanley, County Durham, followed up September’s Best Family Pub gong at the BT Sport Great British Pub Awards with this year’s Tourism Pub title.
Well done @southcauseyinn for winning north east tourism pub of the year!
— Helen Greer (@TheFeathersInn) November 21, 2013
“We’re delighted to have won gold,” said The Feathers Helen Greer. “Thanks to our amazing team and customers who support us.
“It’s great so many fantastic businesses celebrate the North East.”
The evening, on November 21, also provided an opportunity for students from Northumberland College to work alongside some of the North East’s best-known tourism and event businesses to help put on the awards ceremony.
Seven students from a range of courses including photography and professional cookery worked with catering and hospitality staff at Sodexo Prestige at Newcastle United, audio-visual providers Hi-Lights and event dressing company JC Events.
Sarah Stewart, chief executive at destination management and marketing organisation, NewcastleGateshead Initiative, which is delivering the Awards, said: “Tourism is a growth industry in North East England and has been building steadily over the past decade.
“Recent figures show the number of overnight visitors to the North East has increased by 10% to 6.7 million since 2003. In NewcastleGateshead, where we’ve seen a number of hotels open in the last three years, overnight visitors have actually increased by 18%, which is fantastic news not just for hoteliers but for restaurants, venues and attractions.
“Ultimately more visitors means more jobs. The number of people employed by businesses directly or indirectly supporting the visitor economy, in Northumberland, Tyne & Wear and County Durham has grown by 5%, standing at 54,645 jobs in 2012.
“This is a brilliant opportunity for students at Northumberland College to experience first-hand the breadth of employment prospects open to them in this exciting sector once they’ve finished their studies. Tourism doesn’t just create roles at an entry level. It provides career paths for professionals in a range of fields from travel agents to hospitality, cultural events to conferencing.”