Johnsons Coaches, Kirbys Coaches, Masons Minibus and Coach Hire, Skills Holidays and Woods Travel of Bognor Regis were among the coach operators and their representatives that were victorious at the belated British Coach Tourism Awards 2020, held on 22 September at the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham.
In addition, the ceremony recognised the best attractions, destinations, hotels and tourism industry suppliers. It was hosted by television presenter and former Strictly Come Dancing champion Chris Hollins.
The full winners list is as follows:
- Coach Friendly Destination: Wells; Highly commended: Otley
- Coach Friendly Attraction (history and heritage): Bletchley Park Trust
- Coach Friendly Attraction: RHS Gardens; Highly Commended: Aerospace Bristol
- Coach Friendly Guided Tour: Holkham; Highly Commended: Culloden Battlefield
- Cross-Sea Carrier: P&O Ferries
- River and Inland Cruise Operator: Stuart Line Cruises
- Accommodation Provider (independent hotel): Rendezvous Hotel, Skipton
- Accommodation Provider (hotel group): Best Western Hotels and Resorts GB
- Coach Tourism Industry Supplier: Roeville Reservation Software
- Tour Wholesaler: Albatross Travel
- Coach Tourism Professional of the Year: Barry Cobb, Johnsons Coaches
- Coach Tour Driver of the Year: Andy Hinks, Lucketts Travel; Highly Commended: Glyn Harrison, Alfa Travel (sadly since deceased)
- Holiday Programme: Skills Holidays
- Day Excursion Programme: Woods Travel, Bognor Regis
- Coach Tour Operator Social Media Campaign: Johnsons Coaches
- Coach Tour Operator – Small Fleet (1-5 coaches): Masons Minibus and Coach Hire
- Coach Tour Operator – Medium Fleet (6-15 coaches): Kirbys Coaches
- Coach Tour Operator – Large Fleet (over 15 coaches): Johnsons Coaches
- British Coach Tourism Recognition Award: Denise Bridges, Albatross Travel.
Ms Bridges was recognised her career in the travel trade, in attractions, hotels and now as a wholesaler. While she describes events since March 2020 as “absolutely the worst of times in over 40 working years,” she adds: “However, I know our industry will recover. With honesty and understanding between all of us, the best of times will return. It just may take a minute.”