GOLD for our Claire at Devon Tourism Awards

Our Hospitality Manager gets Gold for Outstanding Customer Service at Devon Tourism Awards 2012

Kents Cavern brings home Gold for the English Riviera at the prestigious Devon Tourism Awards

Businesses in the South Devon resort achieved outstanding success at the 2012 Visit Devon Tourism Awards with three golds, three silvers, a bronze and a highly commended award made this year the best-ever result with 8 awards out of a total of only 37 finalists across the whole county.

The results made the English Riviera by far the best-represented destination at the prestigious Devon Tourism Awards ceremony, which took place in North Devon on Thursday 22nd November.

Gold Awards were presented to:

  • Claire Preece, Kents Cavern (Outstanding Customer Service)
  • Agatha Christie Festival, English Riviera Tourism Company (Tourism Event)
  • The Somerville (Bed & Breakfast, Guest Accommodation)


  • English Riviera Visitor Information Service (English Riviera Tourism Company)
  • Villa Marina (Bed & Breakfast, Guest Accommodation)
  • Paignton Zoo (Sustainable Tourism)


  • Lincombe Hall Hotel (Hotel)

Highly Commended:

  • Fishstock (Tourism Event)


Nick Powe, owner of Kents Cavern said,

          “Kents Cavern may be the earliest homes known to man, and this is a pretty unique selling point to start with, but when it comes to hospitality, customer experience and dealing with a very likeable person, Claire is our unique selling point."

Carolyn Custerson, Chief Executive of the ERTC said,

           “2012 has been a very challenging year for the tourism industry with a double-dip recession and the wettest summer on record so to have achieved so many awards in such a tough year is a fantastic result. As Chief Executive of the ERTC and Vice Chairman of the Devon Tourism Partnership I am so proud that the English Riviera did so well and it was a very memorable night.

          "These impressive results highlight how the Turning the Tide for Tourism in Torbay Strategy is inspiring many businesses to raise quality standards and to enter awards. Winning awards can provide a powerful promotional tool and I would encourage more businesses to enter both the new Herald Express English Riviera & South Devon Tourism & Hospitality Awards and the Visit Devon Tourism Awards next year."

Judging was carried out by an independent panel of past winners, industry leaders and experts in their field, selected for their impartiality, experience and suitability for each category and included a mystery visit to all businesses taking part.

As a Gold winner from the Devon Tourism Awards, Claire will be fast tracked into the South West Tourism Excellence Awards in February 2013, which feed into the National Visit England Awards later in 2013.