Tourism Superstar 2019

Our annual Tourism Superstar competition recognises the dedication and passion of those working in the tourism industry. It is awarded to an individual who goes above and beyond the call of duty to ensure visitors to England have an unforgettable experience.

Daily Mirror logoRun in conjunction with our partner, the Daily Mirror, the campaign champions careers in tourism (for people of all ages) and promotes quality, customer service and excellence within England’s tourism industry. 

Now in its eighth year, Tourism Superstar recognises and celebrates those individuals in the tourism industry who go the extra mile to ensure tourists in England have an amazing and unforgettable visitor experience. Tourism Superstar nominees are passionate about where they work and the destination they live in and consistently set the bar high for the standard of service in England's tourism industry.

Download the form and submit your 2019 Tourism Superstar nomination by 14 December 2018

The VisitEngland Tourism Superstar competition is now open for nominations for 2019. Submit your nomination (Word, 56KB) by 14 December

    Please bear in mind that all nominees will need to be willing and able to attend the filming in London or in their locality during January and February 2019, sign a waiver for the film rights and attend the VisitEngland Awards event during English Tourism Week 2019, 30 March – 7 April (date and venue TBC).  

    To qualify the Tourism Superstar must:

    • Work for a tourism business or organisation in England and continue to work for that organisation at the time of English Tourism Week.
    • Be knowledgeable and passionate about the destination they work in and happy to talk about the destination outside of their work remit.
    • Go above and beyond the call of duty to make a holiday experience to remember for visitors.
    • Be available and willing to travel to London during early January to be filmed and happy for that film to be posted on the Mirror website for a number of weeks.
    • Be available to attend the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence Celebration during English Tourism Week 2019 30 March – 7 April (date and venue TBC).
    • Be aware that they have been nominated and happy to participate in any related PR and media opportunities during or post the announcement of the winner.
    • The ten finalists will be required to fill in and sign a waiver form to allow VisitEngland rights to the films we create.

    More information:

    • The ten shortlisted candidates will be filmed either in London or in their local area in January and early February 2019.  Their mini films (30 seconds max) will be posted on www.mirror.co.uk from 20 February – 3 April 2019 where the public will be able to vote for their favourite finalist. They will essentially have between 10 and 30 seconds to say why they should be the Tourism Superstar 2019. The dates for individual filming will be agreed and confirmed as soon as possible.
    • There will also be longer films created of the 10 finalists for use on VistEngland’s consumer and corporate channels. The nominees will be filmed going about their daily roles as tourism ambassadors as tourism ‘Faces of England’. The finalist will need to fill in and sign a waiver form for this.
    • The Mirror will publicise the online voting mechanism online and in the paper throughout the campaign and via Twitter.
    • VisitEngland will promote the campaign via its various channels including consumer channels.
    • Readers will vote on which Tourism Superstar they think should win.
    • The most successful candidates in the past have been supported by robust destination-led media and social media campaigns throughout the voting process.
    • The finalists will be invited to attend VisitEngland Awards for Excellence Celebration during English Tourism Week 30 March – 7 April 2019 (date and venue TBC).
    • The winner will be invited to attend a lunch in London towards the end of April with Nigel Thompson (Daily Mirror) and a senior VisitEngland Executive, (date and venue TBC) .

    Meet our 2018 winner 

    Jim O'ReillyJim O’Reilly, Customer Service Advisor, Red Funnel Ferries, Southampton/Isle of Wight

    Since 2014, Jim O’Reilly has taken what could otherwise be a forgettable moment in a customer’s travel experience and turned it into a memorable highlight.

    While he has numerous loading duties around Red Funnel’s Southampton vehicle ferry terminal, he has become best known as “Jim the Dancing Man” for deploying his signature dance moves while directing traffic on and off the ferries.

    Regular commuters to and from the Isle of Wight routinely show him their appreciation with a smile, wave, hello or a honk which he often reciprocates by giving them an extra special thumbs up and a bow. Overseas visitors often take to social media to share their experience, with thousands of compliments received via post-journey feedback forms.

    Jim dances because he genuinely loves to make people smile. He is proof that when one puts their heart and soul into what they do, they can make an impact and be a superstar in even the most unlikely of places. It’s also a little known fact that Jim suffers from arthritis, yet he doesn’t let that hold him back. He credits his dancing for helping him cope, and is another example of his tenacity, commitment and sincere passion for creating moments that regular customers and visitors will remember and share.

    Read his interview with the Mirror.

    Watch the 2018 nominees' video below:

    Voting has now closed for Tourism Superstar 2018.