The city’s finest businesses and business people have been honoured at the 10th annual Remarkable East Yorkshire Tourism Awards (REYTAs).
More than 500 people packed into a glittering Bonus Arena for Hull and East Yorkshire’s tourism Oscars.
Among the winners were Hull favourites The Lion and Key which triumphed in the Remarkable Pub category, and Hepworth Arcade’s Hotham’s Gin School and Distillery, which took home the award for Remarkable Food Experience.
Tapasya@Marina picked up Remarkable Restaurant, Atom Brewing Co. won Remarkable Taste of East Yorkshire, and the Humber Street Sesh was victorious in fiercely competitive Remarkable Tourism Event category.
There was also a special award for Remarkable East Yorkshire Passion, presented to Freedom Festival chair Graham Chesters.
Andy Gray, VHEY’s tourism manager, described the night as, “a remarkable event to celebrate a remarkable industry which contributes over £878 million annually to the Hull and East Yorkshire economy.”
There were 72 finalists competing in last night’s categories, which recognise the best individuals, attractions and hospitality businesses in the area’s tourism industry. And in addition to the awards presented, the REYTAs are aligned to the Visit England awards, giving winners the chance of national honours.
Councillor Dave Craker, portfolio holder for culture, leisure and tourism at Hull City Council, said: “Each year the REYTAs celebrate the outstanding businesses and organisations that make our region such a remarkable place to visit and enjoy. Congratulations to all the winners and nominees who continue to fly the flag for Hull and East Yorkshire.”
The REYTAs are organised by Visit Hull and East Yorkshire (VHEY), a partnership between East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Hull City Council and the many private sector businesses within the tourism industry.
There were major high spots throughout the evening, not least the last award of the evening, the Passion Award, chosen by the VHEY Board to honour the person making a significant contribution to tourism in Hull and East Yorkshire. It went to Graham Chester, who was described as “one of Hull’s greatest assets – a remarkable man”.
In inviting Hull City councillor David Craker and East Riding of Yorkshire councillor Richard Burton on stage to present the award, MC Blair Jacobs, of BBC Radio Humberside, said Mr Chester was an “unsung hero in so many ways”.
He said: “He has given up hours, weeks, months and years of his life to champion culture in Hull on a voluntary basis. He has written so articulately about the city and been a key press commentator in print, on radio and TV.”
Mr Chester was described as someone who had made a “massive contribution” in promoting poet Philip Larkin through the Larkin Society, Larkin 25 and other events and, as chair of the Freedom Festival, had “created a calendar event for Hull, Yorkshire and the UK, championing Hull’s important historical contribution to freedom and the abolition of slavery”.
Remarkable Bed & Breakfast: The Toll Cottage, Cottingham
Remarkable Business Tourism Award: Beyond Events, Hull University
Remarkable Cuppa: Vanessa Delicatessen & Cafe, Beverley (Highly commended: Nibble@The Dock, Hull)
Remarkable Food Experience: Hotham’s Gin School and Distillery, Hull
Remarkable Holiday Park/Holiday Village: Patrington Haven Leisure Park
Remarkable Hotel: Mercure Hull Grange Park Hotel, Willerby
Remarkable Newcomer: Beverley Minster House
Remarkable Pub: The Lion & Key, Hull (Highly commended: The Ship Inn, Sewerby)
Remarkable Restaurant: Tapasya@Marina, Hull
Remarkable Self-Catering Provider/Property: Kingfisher Lakes Glamping, Brandesburton
Remarkable Taste of East Yorkshire: Atom Brewing Co., Hull
Remarkable Tourism Event: Humber Street Sesh, Hull
Remarkable Visitor Attraction/Experience: RSPB Bempton Cliffs (Highly commended: Hull Truck Theatre)
Remarkable East Yorkshire Passion Award: Graham Chesters