The waiting is almost over for the best and brightest of Yorkshire’s tourism industry as they vie for prestigious White Rose Awards.
This year 94 finalists have been shortlisted across 16 categories reflecting everything the county has to offer, from pubs and restaurants to hotels and caravan parks.
And the winners are set to be announced at a black-tie awards ceremony, the biggest of its kind in the UK, at Doncaster Racecourse on Monday night.
The finalists will be hoping to follow in the footsteps of last year’s winners, which included The Deep in Hull, the National Railway Museum in York, The Leopold Hotel in Sheffield and the Royal Horticultural Society’s Harlow Carr Gardens in Harrogate.
Independent chair of judges Barbara Woroncow, praised this year’s entrants for their high standards..
“With so many exceptional entries it is always a pleasure to see so many high quality submissions. The judges always struggle to choose who should go through to the awards,” she said.
“Yorkshire has such an abundance of tourism gems, those who made the finalist list should be incredibly proud of themselves.”
Joining Barbara Woroncow on the panel of judges are Peter Charlton, editor of the Yorkshire Post, Elaine Lemm, food and travel writer, and Roger Bowers, former High Sheriff of West Yorkshire.
Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “Yorkshire’s tourism economy is booming and the finalist list for the White Rose Awards indicates why.
“The level of high quality entries was outstanding and a firm indication that our tourism industry know the importance of offering our visitors that extra special experience.”
A new category for this year, restaurant of the year, will showcase the county’s top class cuisine, with restaurants in Market Weighton, Helmsley, Hull, York and Sheffield nominated.