Winning national awards

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National Award wining glamping at it's best, at home in Beckley

Despite the current uncertain climate, and having to compete with so many established businesses across the country, our congratulations go to two outstanding local tourism businesses who, from leading by example, have had their tenacity, hard work and initiative recognised by securing two prestigious awards.

The ‘crème de la crème’ of English tourism businesses are honoured at the annual Visit England Awards for Excellence, a glittering ceremony usually – but this year the awards, presented by TV personality Julia Bradbury, were held virtually, but the atmosphere was no less nail biting!

Swallowtail Hill in Beckley and Bexhill-based Vine & Country Tours, short-listed in July, were among those triumphing this year and they flew the flag not only for 1066 Country, but were also the only Sussex businesses to beat off stiff competition to reach the finals of the prestigious national awards.

Swallowtail Hill won the silver award in the Camping, Glamping and Holiday Parks category, offering glamping amidst 40 acres of wildflower meadow and woodland in an idyllic setting, deep in the Sussex countryside. The farm is run by Sarah and Christopher Broadbent purely for conservation and offers the perfect setting to ‘get away from it all’ or to celebrate a special occasion – there are also ‘off grid’ options for a true digital detox.

“We’re absolutely thrilled to have won silver in the national Visit England Awards for Excellence 2020″ said Sarah. “Our category spans a wide range of accommodation types and holiday experience so we’re especially proud to have won as a small business from 1066 Country – it proves we’re punching well above our weight!

“Awards mean a great deal, never more so than this year, when times have been so challenging;  guests love knowing that we’ve been recognised nationally, and it is undoubtedly a boost to our fabulous team who have risen to every challenge we’ve faced and have ensured that we continue to offer guests everything they love about Swallowtail Hill, but with added reassurance in uncertain times.

“We’re also very grateful to fellow businesses in, and the stewardship of, 1066 Country – their camaraderie is hugely valued, particularly in the current climate – we’re very lucky to be part of such a supportive network”.

Vine and Country Tours, a Gold award winning business with wine and food tours across Kent and Sussex.

Vine & Country Tours won gold in the New Tourism Business category. Owned and run by Jamie Thompson and Steph Jones, Vine & Country Tours offers award winning boutique English wine and food tours of Kent and Sussex. The couple lead tours of over 30 private vineyard and brewery partners across Kent and Sussex and offer home wine tastings or private wine and dine events.

Jamie said: “We’re ecstatic, and a little bit stunned, to have won gold at the Visit England Awards of Excellence 2020! We followed our passion and vision three years ago to create Vine & Country and to be recognised among some of the best tourism businesses in the UK is so very humbling.

“We are very proud to represent this beautiful area of the country that we love and want to share, and to be named Best New Tourism Business is an absolute honour – we can’t wait to welcome many more visitors to our luxury tours to experience the flavours and hidden gems here in the wonderful South East countryside. Take that 2020! Bring on 2021!”

Both Swallowtail Hill and Vine & Country Tours are now ranked as one of the top three businesses in their respective categories for excellence in England.

Kevin Boorman, manager of the 1066 Country Marketing Partnership said: “We are delighted that Swallowtail Hill Glamping and Vine & Country Tours have won these prestigious awards. We pride ourselves on the quality of our offer here in 1066 Country, and these two fabulous businesses have done a huge amount to put 1066 Country on the national map.

“Not only have they been rewarded for the quality of their offer but also for their sheer resilience during arguably the most difficult trading conditions that tourism businesses have ever had to face. Both businesses are fantastic ambassadors for 1066 Country as a visitor destination and our team congratulates them on this remarkable achievement.”

For further information please contact:

Sarah Broadbent: Tel: 01797 260 890 or 07767 870 230. Email: sarah@swallowtailhill.com

Jamie Thompson and Steph Jones : Tel: 07846 747 070. Email: jamie@vineandcountrytours.co.uk

Image Credits: 1066 Country Marketing .

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