No matter where you are based in the country, your application will be judged against nationally-set standards, with the same scoring criteria and judging guidance for all core categories at local awards competitions.

vintage car driving past a small country house

VisitBritain/ Michael Cummins

Your online application will be scored and ranked against other local applicants in your category to determine a shortlist. All applicants will receive feedback on how to improve their application, even if they are not shortlisted.

Further rounds of judging, including judging visits with further feedback, may also form part of the judging process.

The overall winners of ‘core categories’ are automatically put forward for national judging. For competitions covering large areas, additional winners may also be eligible to progress.

National judging panels

VisitEngland appoints industry experts across several judging panels to determine the Gold, Silver and Bronze national winners for each category. Please note panel members are subject to change prior to panel meetings.

The following panel members are on the national judging panels for the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2022/23. 

Serviced accommodation

The serviced accommodation judging panel experts judge the following categories: B&B and Guest House of the Year, Small Hotel of the Year and Large Hotel of the Year.

David Weston
Chairman, Bed and Breakfast Association
Headshot of Susan Briggs
Susan Briggs
Director, The Tourism Network and Tourismknowhow.com
Headshot of Louise Bryce
Louise Bryce
Interim Partnerships Director
Headshot of Sadie Rowell
Sadie Rowell
Head of Sales – VisitEngland Assessment Services
Headshot of Nigel Wilkinson
Nigel Wilkinson
VisitEngland Advisory Board Member

Non-serviced accommodation

The non-serviced accommodation judging panel experts judge the following categories: Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year, Self-Catering Accommodation of the Year and New Tourism Business of the Year.

Nikki Nichol
External Communications and Sponsorship Manager, Caravan and Motorhome Club
Allan Lambert
VisitEngland Advisory Board Member
Headshot of Bob Atkinson
Bob Atkinson
Business Development Manager, Sykes Cottages
Headshot of Andy Fenner
Andy Fenner
Chief Executive, STAA
Headshot of Sophie Lam
Sophie Lam
Travel Editor at i

Attractions and experiences

The attractions and experiences judging panel experts judge the following categories: Large Visitor Attraction of the Year, Small Visitor Attraction of the Year, Experience of the Year and the Unsung Hero Award.

Paul Kelly
Chief Executive at British Association of Leisure Parks Piers and Attractions (BALPPA)
Fiona Pollard
VisitEngland Advisory Board member
Headshot of Serena Jacobs
Serena Jacobs
Director of Finance, VisitBritain/VisitEngland
Headshot of Rachel Read
Rachel Read
Co-Founder and Director of Blooloop
Headshot of Anita Waddell
Anita Waddell
Agility Marketing

Food and drink

The food and drink judging panel experts judge the following categories: Pub of the Year, Taste of England Award and the Resilience and Innovation Award.

Emma McClarkin
Chief Executive Officer at British Beer & Pub Association
Headshot of Paul Nunny
Paul Nunny
Executive Director Cask Marque
Sophie Braybrooke
Chief Executive, Stay in a Pub
Headshot of Glen Mutel
Glen Mutel
Editor, Food by National Geographic Traveller (UK)
Headshot of Robin Johnson
Robin Johnson
Global Marketing Director, VisitBritain/VisitEngland


The accessibility judging panel experts judge the Accessible & Inclusive Tourism Award category.

Headshot of Carrie Ann L
Carrie-Ann Lightley
Head of Marketing, AccessAble
Chris Veitch
Inclusive Tourism Consultant
Ross Calladine
Head of Business Support, VisitEngland and Disability and Access Ambassador for Tourism, UK Government
Headshot of Debra Lang
Debra Lang
Director of HR and Professional Services, VisitBritain/VisitEngland
Headshot of Cat Woodhead
Catherine Woodhead
CEO, Muscular Dystrophy UK


The sustainability judging panel experts judge the Ethical, Responsible & Sustainable Tourism Award category.

Andrea Nicholas
Chief Executive at Green Tourism
Neil Warren
Sustainable Tourism Consultant, Neil Warren Support
Sarah Fowler
VisitEngland Advisory Board Member and Chief Executive of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust
Headshot of Julian Gray
Julian Gray
Chair, National Trails UK
Headshot of Holly Tuppen
Holly Tuppen
Sustainable Travel Expert and Writer
Headshot of Janet Uttley
Janet Uttley
Head of Business Support Transformation Project, VisitEngland
Headshot of Kat Emmett
Kat Emmett
Zero Carbon Company

Business events

The business events judging panel experts judge the Business Events Venue of the Year category.

Headshot of Paul Black
Paul Black
Head of Business Events, VisitBritain/VisitEngland
Headshot of Nadine Thompson
Nadine Thompson
VisitEngland Advisory Board Member
Headshot of Rachel Parker
Rachel Parker
AEV Director (Association of Event Venues)
Headshot of Holly Patrick
Holly Patrick
Social Editor & Senior Journalist at Northstar Meetings Group