Let us present you with Ribble Valley Tourism Awards Winners for 2018:

(*On the following pictures Amanda Dowson RVTA Chairman on the left, and Roger Borrell editor of Lancashire Life on the right)

The Ribble Valley Tourism Awards are a celebration of just some of the many good things happening in this area.

These awards are not necessarily designed to determine the ‘best of’, but more to recognise achievement, innovation, good design, creativity and most of all people, both as individuals and as teams. Those who work so hard to make visitors welcome and make tourism in the Ribble Valley so special.


Special Contribution Award for Food Excellence

Steven Smith

Steven Smith has worked tirelessly to create something truly special at the
Freemasons Wiswell, whilst at the same time helping to raise the profile
of the Ribble Valley food offer nationally, largely by winning national accolades, but also by achieving national press coverage. In his pursuit of stronomic excellence, Steven has:

  • Become a champion of unique culinary experiences
  • Realised national recognition for the Ribble Valley food offer
  • Been awarded numerous accolades for gastronomic excellence
  • Achieved outstanding PR for the Ribble Valley



Business Innovation

Greig Barnes

This year, Greig Barnes celebrates his 20th anniversary at the Spread Eagle
Sawley. His fabulous food quality and consistency are well known. Over that time his dedication and enthusiasm have ensured that the business has maintained its reputation amidst changing food trends and growing competition.

  • Sustained business keeping up with food trends and competition
  • Developed new, niche markets
  • Innovative promotions and offers


Business Transformation

Waddow Hall

The management team at this Girl Guide Association-owned estate, has been working
hard to transform thebusiness over the last 3 years, making significant changes that have resulted in the enterprise being profitable for the first time in its 90 year history. Waddow is now more accessible for tourism opportunities, including overnight accommodation and events. Achievements include:

  • Improvement of indoor facilities, including bedrooms
  • Diversification to actively encourage educational tourism and improve social mobility
  • Excellent ratings on customer care
  • Number of supported schools growing from 35-73




Creativity in Food & Hospitality

Artisan Ribble Valley

Artisan Ribble Valley has created a new dining out experience which allows
both residents and visitors yet another exciting venue from which to choose.

This stunning new development combines fantastic, locally sourced food, with a little ‘added theatre’. It offers:

  • A celebration of local food
  • An outside area for fine weather dining
  • A private upper area with an outside terrace with wonderful views
  • Log burning stove, cocktails and a menu to suit all tastes


Tourism Innovation

Fullaloves Longridge

A stunning transformation of an old unit into a stylish wine bar in the centre
of Longridge, it has brought a real sense of style and created a wonderful dining and drinking experience. Special events hosted here are attracting new visitors into the town.

  • Beautiful  conversion of former stables building
  • A concise collection of fabulous wines originating from smaller yielding vineyards and winemakers
  • Varied tapas and light bites menu
  • A new venue for events and special occasions



Quality Tourism

Ribble Valley Holiday Homes

Ribble Valley Holiday Homes is a new complex of ten self-catering homes, ranging
from a 2 bedroom accessible bungalow to an 8 bedroom detached house, located close to Ribchester. Each unit has been most tastefully designed with great attention to detail and equipped to the highest specification.

  • A range of different capacity units from a 2 bedroom accessible bungalow to an 8 bedroom detached house
  • Facilities unique to each unit, but include a tennis court, snooker table, and table tennis table, in addition to private hot tubs
  • Committed to environment, as a Green Tourism Gold award business



Transformational Tourism

The Dog Inn Longridge

This town centre pub, which has existed since the 1830s, has been totally transformed
to create a high-quality drinking and dining experience in the centre of Longridge. The development includes new luxury holiday apartments above. The bar has been stylishly refurbished and is attracting new clientele, whilst remaining an important facility for local people.

  • Log fires in winter, heavenly sun-baked terraces in summer
  • Decorated in a rustic style with a quirky fusion
  • Luxury holiday apartments perfect for business or pleasure
  • Each apartment designed for comfort and relaxation, features a bright, spacious living room


Inspirational Tourism

The Spinning Block Holmes Mill

Another amazing building transformation by James’ Places, including the creation of a unique dining experience, along with stunning bedrooms, much needed in both Clitheroe and the wider Ribble Valley.

  • Historic building with an art nouveau inspired décor
  • A nouveau dining experience using the best and the freshest local ingredients
  • Bar open for morning coffee to evening aperitifs, cocktails, and nightcaps
  • A new boutique hotel with accessible and family rooms

Quality Tourism

The Shippon

The detached and beautifully presented Shippon has been tastefully converted by the owners, with close attention to detail, including oak engineered flooring, exposed brick walls and beams. Ideal for families, walkers, cyclists and couples.

  • Two double bedrooms
  • Views over open country
  • Log burner
  • Storage for bikes
  • Hot tub

Excellence in Service Tourism

Isabella Kenyon

Isabella is one of the original members of the rapidly growing Seafood Pub company business and has played a huge part in its journey so far. She is known for her naturally outstanding customer skills, always demonstrating an enthusiastic approach and professionalism to whatever part of the business she is promoting, including food, drink and accommodation.

  • Outstanding customer care skills and a ‘hospitality natural’
  • Versatile team member with natural enthusiasm
  • A great ambassador for the business, as well as for Downham and for the Ribble Valley



Team of the Year

Stanley House Hotel and Spa

The diverse nature of the business at Stanley House Hotel & Spa means the reservations team must be adaptable, quick thinking and resourceful with their call handling skills. A restructuring last year has resulted in:

  • A team with an understanding of the different needs of customers
  • Improved guest experience by specially trained staff
  • 17% of year-on-year revenue increase
  • No more potential loss of revenue because of unanswered phones


Creative Tourism

Catherine Hollin & Christine Lee

The James’ Places/Emporium interior design team may be small, but they work tirelessly across all the company’s sites to establish and maintain outstanding standards of interior design. They are well known for their creativity, often pushing boundaries of interior design, whilst also maintaining a vibrant retail base.

  • Interior design of award winning venues
  • Successful design in a challenging range of buildings
  • Creating new concepts
  • Successful interiors shop

Excellence in Customer Service

Jeremy Ferris

Jeremy is the absolute face of their venue, someone who greets every guest, making each and everyone feel most special.  Known for his outstanding customer service skills his versatile and enthusiastic approach is admired by his colleagues and valued by guests.

  • A genuine enthusiasm for his job each and every day
  • The face of the venue known as Mr Mitton
  • Versatile and willing to work in any part of the business


New Business

Ribble Valley Country Cottages

A recently developed complex of holiday cottages, finished to immaculate quality, and accessible to all visitors. The furniture and fittings are beautiful, and the complex is maintained to the very highest standards. The owners offer outstanding levels of customer service.

  • New business (July 2017) and already established a good market
  • Attracting domestic and international guests
  • Easily accessible accommodation (without stairs)
  • Extraordinary attention to detail in terms of customer requirements

Event of the Year

Ribble Valley Mod Weekender

An annual 3-day Mod, Scooter and Music festival, which takes place during the last weekend in September.

  • Main stage live bands at The Grand Venue plus supporting venues
  • A boost for off season tourism
  • A spectacle as 500 Scooters ride through Ribble Valley countryside and into the town
  • An expanding live music scene
  • Attracting a growing niche audience of visitors

Inspiring Volunteers

Clitheroe Concerts Society

Clitheroe Concerts Society has been organising music-related events for 66 seasons, and in recent years, their endeavours have begun to make a significant impact on tourism by attracting visitors with quality musical entertainment in local venues. The group is entirely voluntary, and their achievements have been recognised by Marketing Lancashire.

  • Musical concerts at a variety of venues
  • Named artists which are now attracting visitors into the area
  • Events deliberately targeting off peak periods to maximise tourism

Unsung Heroes

Amanda Farrington is someone who is known to be a hardworking stalwart and as housekeeper at the popular wedding venue Eaves Hall always remains level headed in spite of having to meet demanding turnaround times. She turns up for work come rain or shine, most recently battling through snow and covering colleagues’ absences.

Hayley Parkinson, Housekeeper at the Swan Inn Whalley, is someone with an immensely sunny personality for whom nothing is too much trouble. She is a team player who clearly has the admiration of her work colleagues. To quote her boss. ‘She has served breakfast to thousands of visitors over the years she has worked for us and still has absolute enthusiasm for every day. She has a pleasing nature and a calm manner’


Ben Wain Night Porter at Eaves Hall is someone who is described as a hidden gem in their business. He sees very few guests and yet he comes about at night at this popular wedding venue, and painstakingly picks up confetti pieces from the garden, polishes the brass work and rakes up the gravel in a Zen like style, ultimately ensuring guests experience the wow factor.


Jonathan Rydeheard is someone who is most popular with his colleagues as nothing is too much trouble. He is versatile, working as barman and night porter, and indeed any role, as he enthusiastically supports all departments at the Shireburn Hotel


Tourism Champion

Hetty Byrne – Forest of Bowland A.O.N.B.

Working as part of a team to protect and promote one of England’s finest landscapes, namely Bowland, Hetty’s job is to promote tourism in ways that do not spoil our landscape. It is fair to say her reputation amongst tourism businesses, particularly those smaller and newer enterprises, is outstanding. Her sound business advice has resulted in successful enterprises and better environments.

  • Provided a consistently high level of professional service to tourism business
  • Supported numerous tourism enterprises,  including new start ups
  • Helped create new opportunities for the local community and for landscape conservation