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Shepherd Neame brewery has been named Small Visitor Attraction of the Year in the Enjoy England Awards for Excellence 2011.
The national awards are organised by VisitEngland and recognise outstanding commitment to customer service and high quality standards.
Shepherd Neame competed against seven other regional finalists to scoop the top prize, and Visitor Centre manager Graham Hukins said: “Winning this award is a great testament to the hard work of the team who provide a first-class experience for our visitors.”
Britain’s oldest brewer was recognised for its outstanding customer service, good presentation of information, accessibility and innovative marketing that has brought in new and repeat visitors.
The brewery hosts guided tours and tastings, themed Beer and Food Evenings, Murder Mysteries, Ale Samplers’ Suppers, Father’s Day Lunches and even Halloween Ghost Tours, to name a few.
Graham adds: “We saw a 25 per cent rise in visitor numbers during 2010 and have increased the number of tours to meet demand. We’re looking forward to another busy year.”
Attractions are rigorously reviewed by independent assessors and judged by a selected board of tourism industry experts. The results were announced at a special awards ceremony at The Great Hall, Birmingham University on April 15.
John Williams, Chairman of Tourism South East, said: “Competition from across England is fierce and standards are extremely high so to achieve such high accolades is a resounding endorsement.”
For information on tours and events at the brewery visit www.shepherdneame.co.uk, call the Visitor Centre on 01795 542016 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.