THE finalists have been announced for this year’s South West Tourism Excellence Awards.

Businesses from across Cornwall, Devon, Wiltshire, Gloucestershire, Bath, Bristol, Somerset and Dorset, have been named for their work in the tourism industry.

The news follows an awards process which started in April 2023, with nearly 500 entries submitted, a rigorous judging process and many winning in their county schemes. 

The top performers have now been named for the regional final to be held in the Great Hall of Exeter University on March 14.

All the finalists will have to wait until March 14 to learn whether they have won Gold, Silver or Bronze.  Many will also be nominated to represent the South West in the national VisitEngland awards later in the year.

The awards, which have themselves retained their ‘Outstanding’ accolade in the Awards Trust Mark scheme, are recognised for their rigour with independent judges spending months poring over entry submissions, websites, social media and review sites, as well as carrying out business visits. 

Reports and recommendations were then submitted to an independent panel who made the final decisions.

The Outstanding Contribution To South West Tourism Award, sponsored by South West Tourism Alliance, is to be announced at the event.

Lawrence Palk, director of B2B Sales from headline sponsors Wildanet, said: “The South West is a world-class tourism destination with so much to offer, regularly attracting millions of visitors each year. The Tourism Awards are a fantastic stage on which to showcase and celebrate those incredible businesses that are flying the flag for the region.

Chair of judges Dr Natalie Semley, lecturer in sustainable tourism management at Cornwall Business School, said: “This year we have witnessed an outstanding level of excellence; across the region and all entries. 

“The shortlisted finalists really stand out from the crowd, and they are commended for their level of dedication, commitment, and passion towards delivering a more sustainable, accessible, and inclusive tourism industry here in the Southwest.”

Robin Barker, director of services for Tourism Ltd, who manage the awards, added: “It is an honour to be associated with the excellence witnessed across these outstanding businesses, many of whom have not just survived tough times but have innovated, invested and delivered outstanding service to the region’s visitors.  Well done to them all.” 

• A full list of finalist can be found at