Four of the region’s best tourism businesses and individuals have been announced as finalists for the national tourism awards.

Hotel Indigo Durham, Seaham Hall, Triple A Food Tours and Clive Goodwin of The Ouseburn Trust will be competing for the top spot at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence.

The prestigious awards, being held in Birmingham on June 8, will see them go up against finalists from around the country in 15 categories.

The four nominees were selected after picking up Gold at the North East England Tourism Awards in March.

NewcastleGateshead is delighted to have finalists in two new award categories.

New Tourism Business of the Year winner Triple A Food Tours, based in Newcastle will be taking on Rowley Farm Holidays in Worcestershire and Three Mile Beach in Cornwall to pick up the national title.

In the Unsung Hero category, which celebrates individuals who go the extra mile to ensure visitors have a truly memorable experience, Clive Goodwin, of The Ouseburn Trust will be flying the flag for the North East.

Two of the region’s top hotels will also be fighting out for the national title. Hotel Indigo, Durham has been nominated in the Large Hotel of the Year category competing against The Langham, in London and The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa in Somerset.

In the Small Hotel of the Year Seaham Hall will be hoping to strike gold against The Idle Rocks in Cornwall and No 15 by Guesthouse in Somerset.

Sarah Green, chief executive of NewcastleGateshead Initiative, who deliver the regional tourism awards, said: “This is incredible news for the region and for the tourism industry. Congratulations to all of the nominees, in particular those NewcastleGateshead businesses Triple A Tours and Clive Goodwin at The Ouseburn Trust, who are fantastic examples of businesses and individuals going the extra mile to offer visitors an unforgettable experience.

“Here in the North East we already know the quality, passion and innovation that our tourism businesses and individuals bring to the sector, but for that to be recognised on a national scale is credit to everyone involved.

“Tourism remains the fourth largest sector in the region’s economy, and we would like to wish all the regional nominees good luck. A win at the finals both drives bookings for the business but also shouts about the quality of the regional offer.”

Amy Whitfield, owner of Triple A Food Tours, which runs tours around Newcastle, Ouseburn, Northumberland and Durham, said: “I actually can’t put into words how over the moon I am! I will definitely be attending the evening to fly the flag for the North East! I really am blown away to be shortlisted for Visit England Award! It’s an honour to be able to represent the North Easts incredible independent food scene.”

Clive Goodwin, who co-ordinates the programme of tours at The Victoria Tunnel, said: “I am privileged to be doing the job I love. The Victoria Tunnel was a largely unknown part of Newcastle’s rich mining and WW2 heritage and from getting the job in 2010, I have put everything into sharing its fantastic story into the public domain. I am so proud to have achieved this and helped make the Victoria Tunnel Newcastle’s most popular tourist attraction.”

Applications for the North East England Tourism Awards, which will celebrate it’s 20th anniversary next year, will open following the national awards in June.

For a full list of finalists go to https://www.visitbritain.org/visitengland-announces-awards-excellence-2022-finalists