Tourism Awards: Meet the Judges of Big and Small Attractions

08:00 am September 3, 2022

The East of England Tourism Awards 2022-2023 are open for entries. Here we talk to the judges and sponsors of the Big Tourist Attraction of the Year and Small Tourist Attraction of the Year awards.

Major tourist attraction of the year

Joanna Nicholls, Partner at Howes Percival:

Why did you want to get involved in the East of England Tourism Awards?

Many of our clients operate in the tourism sector and we are keen to support them by championing the industry and showcasing the East of England as a fantastic destination to visit.

We are particularly keen to recognize major tourist attraction businesses as they attract tourists from across the UK, making a direct contribution to the visitor economy and delivering wider benefits to local communities.

These awards celebrate the best attractions in our region and we are proud to participate again this year.

Joanna Nicholls, Partner at Howes Percival
– Credit: Howes Percival

What do you bring to the judging process?

I have extensive experience working with a wide range of clients who operate in the tourism sector, including owners of tourist attractions, hotels, restaurants and holiday parks, to name a few. -ones.

So I have a good understanding of the challenges and opportunities faced by various companies in this sector.

What will it take to wow you?

Many businesses working in the region’s tourism industry have shown incredible resilience during recent periods of uncertainty.

I will be impressed by businesses that go the extra mile and continually try to offer something different and exciting to enrich visitor experiences despite the challenges they have faced.

What advice would you give to a tourism business considering participating in this award?

Shout out about your accomplishments! There are so many fantastic attractions across the region, offering a range of experiences appealing to all generations.

If you are passionate about your business and want to showcase your amazing team, share it with us. Don’t be put off by other candidates.

Small tourist attraction of the year

Martin Dupée, Chairman of Norfolk and Suffolk Tourist Attractions:

Can you tell us a bit about your involvement in the tourism industry?

I joined the region’s tourism industry in 2004 and have since managed the business operations of a number of well-known attractions. I am excited to serve my second term as NSTA Chairman and remain passionate about advocating for the operations of our many wonderful attractions, large and small. I also know firsthand what it takes to deliver and have a great day.

What do you bring to the judging process?

I had the honor for many years as a tourist attractions leader and also served as an awards judge for almost as many years. I really look forward to seeing the exceptional service and passion provided by the operators and crews working at the smaller attractions in the area.

Have you ever been judged for an award yourself?

As a manager and director of a tourist attraction, I was able to welcome judges and share the profession that fascinates me so much.

I’ve even had the privilege of winning a few times too, and was extremely honored to receive the Outstanding Contribution to Tourism award at the Norfolk and Suffolk Tourism Awards in 2018.

Martin Dupée, Chairman of Norfolk and Suffolk Tourist Attractions

Martin Dupée, Chairman of Norfolk and Suffolk Tourist Attractions
– Credit: NSTA

Will you use this experience to judge this price?

Absolutely, I’ve seen both sides, sometimes as a judge and sometimes hosting judges to visit.

I can see and understand the real impact individuals have on an attraction as we create memories for those who visit us.

What advice would you give to a small tourist attraction considering entering?

Believe in the experience you provide to visitors every day and take great pride in what you add to someone’s day.

By participating in the awards, you can not only get the recognition you truly deserve, but it also provides a huge opportunity to promote the business to others who might not otherwise have had the opportunity to visit. With so many hidden gems in the area, it’s time to shine.

Archant organizes and hosts the annual East of England Tourism Awards to recognize and celebrate businesses and individuals who contribute to the regional tourism economy. The prizes are open for entries until Sunday, October 2. To enter, please visit

Keith P. Plain