Organisers of this year’s North East Tourism Awards have announced which nominations have made the shortlist.
Judges have seen a 34% increase in applications since last year when the event was taken over by NewcastleGateshed Initiative.
Exactly 98 businesses have submitted applications for the awards, which is a 34% increase from last.
Businesses among those making the shortlist include the Discovery Museum and the Sage Gateshead, which are up for this year’s Access for All Tourism Award.
Companies shortlisted for this year’s Business Tourism Award include Northumbria University and their Inspirational Spaces, Sodexo Prestige ay Newcastle United Football Club and Event Durham at Durham University.
Sarah Stewart, chief executive at destination management and marketing organisation, NewcastleGateshead Initiative said: “This year’s Tourism Awards are set to be bigger and better.
“It’s fantastic to see that since last year’s successful awards ceremony at Sage Gateshead even more tourism business have entered in 2013.
“Taking on the project has been incredibly rewarding.
“The North East England Tourism Awards are an important platform.
“They create a spotlight for the industry to shine and give businesses the opportunity to celebrate their innovation, quality and performance.
“The region has a lot to offer visitors and the awards celebrate this diversity.”
The award ceremony, delivered in partnership with Sodexo Prestige and Hi-Lights, will take place next month at St James’ Park and will be hosted by BBC Look North Presenter Carol Malia.
Winners at the event will also have the chance to compete on a national stage against winners from England’s other regions at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence in 2014.
Sarah added: “Businesses aspire to be recognised for investment and performance achievements, the North East England Tourism Awards are a great way to deliver this recognition, they inspire future applicants, and for those who don’t win an award, the process of judging and feeding back also helps them to develop.”
NewcastleGateshead Initiative has worked alongside other Northern Tourism Alliance members and wider partners to deliver the awards in 2013, including Visit County Durham, Northumberland Tourism, Hadrian’s Wall Trust, North East Hotels Association, Northumberland County Council, Sunderland City Council, North Tyneside Council and South Tyneside Council.
Northumbrian Water and Northumberland College are event sponsors