The annual Lancashire Tourism Awards took place earlier last night, revealing the brightest and best businesses and individuals working in the county’s tourism sector.

This year’s awards were held at the new Blackpool Conference and Exhibition Centre, supported by Headline Sponsor University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and Destination Sponsor Visit Blackpool.

Several East Lancashire businesses were praised at the ceremony, including Crow Wood Hotel and Spa Resort in Burnley, which received this year’s special recognition award.

Lancashire Telegraph: Guest presenter Steve RoyleGuest presenter Steve Royle (Image: Marketing Lancashire)

A spokesperson for the hotel said: “We're delighted to have won Lancashire Tourism Awards’ special recognition award, proudly selected by the judges across all of the finalists.

“We'd like to say a big thank you to all of our guests as well as our teams across the Crow Wood Resort in making Crow Wood a great place to be.”

Oakdean Cottages in Langho won self-catering accommodation of the year.

Manager Anna Davies said: “We are over the moon to have won our Lancashire Tourism Award.

“Sue and Ian Sherrington converted some old sheds into the beautiful Oakdean Cottages 10 years ago when they retired and have since welcomed hundreds of visitors to the Ribble Valley from all over the world.  

“We now run them together, entirely focused on creating the perfect home from home for our guests.  

“We aren’t huge and so didn’t think we had a chance of winning in such a prestigious category, but we did.

“We are hugely thankful to Marketing Lancashire and honoured to be in the company of our fellow finalists and winners.”

Hedgerow Luxury Glamping, in Newsholme, won the ethical, responsible and sustainable tourism award.

A spokesperson said: We were totally out of our comfort zone entering this award, but desperate to show everyone that hybrid glamping sites are the future.

"Now, we get represent Lancashire at the national awards. 

“We are lost for words which doesn’t happen often.

“Thank you to our amazing team. Working to be sustainable isn’t always easy but we always keep going.

“Awards like these make it possible to show off what we are proud to do every day.”

Michael Huckerby, director of The Lawrence Hotel in Padiham, is thrilled to have won most dog friendly business of the year.

He said: "Dogs are part of the family now and be recognised as a venue that is leading the way in canine hospitality, as well as look after their owners, is fantastic."

Lancashire comedian Steve Royle was guest presenter and kept the audience entertained throughout with the unique style and brilliant humour that saw him reach the finals of ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent.

Andrea Challis, chair of the board at Marketing Lancashire, said:“I am delighted to be here to celebrate with you all and to help the Marketing Lancashire team champion the very best of the county’s tourism and hospitality businesses.

“I am honestly in awe of the strength and diversity of our wonderful sector here in Lancashire.”

Rachel McQueen, chief executive of Marketing Lancashire, said: “Success in 2022 was hard fought, hard won, against, quite literally, all the odds. But successes there were, and significant ones too.

“What came through loud and clear from the judges and our mystery shoppers was the tremendous hard work, determination, entrepreneurship and vision demonstrated by our tourism businesses.

“There is absolutely no shortage of pride, passion and ambition in this room, and myself and the Marketing Lancashire team look forward to working with you to support the county’s tourism and hospitality sector to thrive.”

Full list of Lancashire Tourism Awards 2023 winners:

Accessible and Inclusive Tourism Award

Brickhouse Farm Holiday Cottages & Lakeside Hub, Hambleton - WINNER

The Estuary Riverside Chalets, Hambleton

Fleetwood Beach Wheelchairs

Thornton Hall Country Park, Thornton-in-Craven

Business Events Venue of the Year

Crow Wood Hotel & Spa Resort, Burnley

Ewood Experience, Blackburn

Merlin Events, Blackpool - WINNER

The Wellbeing Farm, Edgworth

Winter Gardens Blackpool

Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year

Hedgerow Luxury Glamping, Newsholme

Newton Hall Holiday Park, Blackpool

Ribble Valley Retreat, Langho - WINNER

The Secret Garden Glamping, Skelmersdale

Stanley Villa Farm Fishing & Camping, Greenhalgh

Cultural Venue/Organisation Award

Lancaster Grand Theatre

Samlesbury Hall

Winter Gardens Blackpool - WINNER

Dog Friendly Business of the Year

Bella Vista Lodge, Blackpool

The Golden Ball of Longton

HAPPA, Shores Hey Farm, Briercliffe

The Lawrence Hotel, Padiham - WINNER

Mowbreck Holiday Park, Wesham

Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Tourism Award

Hedgerow Luxury Glamping, Newsholme - WINNER

Laythams Holiday Lets Retreat, Slaidburn

The Wellbeing Farm, Edgworth

Blackpool Heritage Tram Tours

Experience of the Year

Blackpool Pleasure Beach ‘Walk The…’ Experiences - WINNER

Countryside & Culinary Breaks at Dale House Barn, Slaidburn

Goosnargh Gin School Experience Days

Inch Perfect Trials Experience Day, Whitewell

Hospitality and Tourism Student of the Year

Steven Cartmell, BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Travel & Tourism at Blackpool Sixth Form College.

Sophie Lancaster, NCFE Extended Diploma Travel & Tourism at Runshaw College

Charlie Nicholls, C&G L3 Diploma in Professional Cookery at Blackpool and the Fylde College - WINNER

David Wetherill, Chef Diploma at Runshaw College

Hotel Wedding Venue of the Year

Crow Wood Hotel & Spa Resort, Burnley

Mitton Hall, Mitton - WINNER

Mytton Fold Hotel, Langho

Stanley House Hotel & Spa, Mellor

Lancashire Perfect Stay – Small Serviced Accommodation

3 Millstones Inn, West Bradford

Dale House Barn and B&B, Slaidburn

Fence Gate Lodge, Fence - WINNER

The Lawrence Hotel, Padiham

The Royal at Heysham

Large Event of the Year Award

British Textile Biennial, East Lancashire

Christmas by the Sea, Blackpool

Highest Point Festival, Lancaster - WINNER

Santa Specials at East Lancashire Railway

Large Hotel of the Year

Crow Wood Hotel & Spa Resort, Burnley

Foxfields Country Hotel, Whalley

Hampton by Hilton Blackpool - WINNER

Mytton Fold Hotel, Langho

New Tourism Business of the Year

The Estuary Riverside Chalets, Hambleton

Ribble Valley Retreat, Langho - WINNER

Pub of the Year

PLAU, Preston - WINNER

Shireburn Arms, Hurst Green

White Bull Oswaldtwistle

Resilience and Innovation Award

The Secret Garden Glamping, Skelmersdale

The Whitehall Hotel & Distillery, Darwen - WINNER

Winter Gardens Blackpool

Self-Catering Accommodation of the Year

Brickhouse Holiday Cottages, Hambleton

Laythams Holiday Lets Retreat, Clitheroe

Oakdean Cottages, Langho - WINNER

Small Event of the Year Award

British Country Music Festival, Blackpool

Chorley Flower Show

Dino Fest, Lancaster

Pumpkin Festival at Ridgeway Farm, Blackpool

Thornton Hall Christmas Adventure, Thornton-in-Craven - WINNER

Taste Lancashire Award

263 Restaurant, Preston - WINNER

The Coach and Horses, Bolton-by-Bowland

La Locanda, Gisburn

Taste Lancashire Producer Award

Brindle Distillery, Chorley - WINNER

Goosnargh Gin

Lancaster Brewery Spirits Company

Morecambe Bay Chowder

Unsung Hero Award

Jenna Bullows, Assistant Manager, The Whitehall Hotel and Distillery

Sharon Jones, Hall Director, Samlesbury Hall Jeremy Rowlands, Managing Director, Meat & Drink - WINNER

Visitor Attraction of the Year

The Blackpool Tower

The Flower Bowl Entertainment Centre, Brock - WINNER

Thornton Hall Country Park, Thornton-in-Craven

Wedding Venue of the Year

The Mount Pavilion, Fleetwood

The Out Barn, Waddington - WINNER

Samlesbury Hall

The Wellbeing Farm, Edgworth