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Marketing Cheshire Tourism Awards launch with new events and festival category for 2025


Tourism contributes £3.41bn to the region’s economy

Organisers of the Marketing Cheshire Tourism Awards unveiled a new Best Event or Festival category for 2025 as they launched their annual search for the region’s tourism superstars.

The prestigious awards celebrate the wide range of visitor economy businesses in Cheshire and Warrington’s and recognise the brilliant people behind them. Tourism contributes £3.41bn to the region’s economy, employs around 35,000 people and attracts more than 50 million visitors every year.

From family attractions, wedding venues and holiday parks to accommodation providers, pubs and restaurants, Marketing Cheshire today issued a rallying call for entries for the 2025 awards which are adopting hashtag #MCTA25.

The new Best Event or Festival Award is now one of 17 widespread categories. Its inclusion follows feedback from businesses and from the desire of Marketing Cheshire to celebrate the region’s incredible track record of hosting events ranging from royal weddings to world-class music festivals.

Organisers are hoping for another bumper year of entries following a record number of submissions in 2024 – up 29% on the previous year.

The 2024 winners included major attractions Chester Zoo, BeWILDerwood and Jodrell Bank, alongside independent operators and individuals who make the Cheshire and Warrington visitor economy one of the best in the country. They were crowned by host and TV actress Lucy-Jo Hudson during a glittering ceremony in front of 300 guests at Chester Cathedral in March.

The deadline to enter the 2025 awards, which also include categories for accessible and inclusive tourism and ethical, responsible and sustainable tourism, is August 30. The winners will be announced at a ceremony in March next year.

Qualifying winners are then automatically entered into the national VisitEngland Awards for Excellence to compete against the best in the country. 

To enter the 2025 awards and to see the hall of fame of previous winners  go to

Encouraging businesses and individuals to enter the awards, Trevor Brocklebank, Chair of Marketing Cheshire said: The awards celebrate the trailblazing businesses and individuals behind Cheshire and Warrington’s visitor economy which attracts 50 million visitors a year.

“The awards continue to evolve, and it is fantastic that we have added the Best Event or Festival Award given the region’s prowess and pedigree in this area. I expect this will be a strongly contested award.

“The fact businesses are suggesting award categories is testament to just how much of an impact the awards have made. As well as the prestige, previous entrants have told us that taking part has increased bookings, generated PR, and boosted staff morale and recruitment.”

Some of last year’s winners also revealed what the awards meant to them

Lydia Downey, Head of Marketing and Media at BeWILDerwood which took the Best Tourism Marketing Project of the Year Award for its Make a Sploosh at BeWILDerwood summer promotional campaign said:If you’re thinking of entering the awards, do it! We’ve been lucky enough to win a few times over the years, winning best newcomer and large visitor attraction a few years back which really helped establish us in the area, as well as winning best marketing project of the year last year. Both awards have been brilliant for staff morale, and we will continue to enter.”

Charlotte Edwards, general manager of The Bear’s Paw which was named Small Serviced Accommodation Provider of the Year said: “The Marketing Cheshire Tourism Awards are hugely significant to our business. Not only did the awards dinner itself provide a fantastic opportunity for the team to come together and celebrate their hard work and group achievements, but the application process and mystery visitor experience allows us to reflect on our successes and areas of improvement as a business. This has proved invaluable in helping us to maintain our high standards. Ending the process with a win was a great honour.”

On behalf of Walton Hall and Gardens, Cllr Tony Higgins, Warrington Borough Council’s cabinet member for communities, culture and leisure, said: “Winning Wedding Venue of the Year has been incredible for us at Walton Hall and Gardens.

“We’re a smaller scale venue, operated by a small team, so to have their hard work recognised by Marketing Cheshire has been invaluable for morale, as well as future marketing of the estate. Winning the award this year has been a significant boost to our visibility and reputation as a top wedding venue and tourism destination, not only in Warrington but across the region.

“We can’t recommend entering the Marketing Cheshire Tourism Awards enough, the benefits from being recognised as part of the wider Cheshire tourism and attractions economy are brilliant for smaller scale businesses such as our own.” 

Full list of categories at the 2024/25 Marketing Cheshire Awards

  • Accessible and Inclusive Tourism Award
  • Best Event or Festival Award - new category for 2025
  • Best Tourism Marketing Project of the Year
  • Business Events Venue of the Year
  • Camping, Glamping and Holiday Park of the Year
  • Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Tourism Award
  • Experience of the Year
  • Large Hotel of the Year
  • New Tourism Business of the Year
  • Pub of the Year
  • Self-Catering Accommodation of the Year
  • Small Serviced Accommodation Provider of the Year
  • Taste of Cheshire Award
  • Team of the Year
  • Unsung Hero Award
  • Visitor Attraction of the Year
  • Wedding Venue of the Year