Lancashire accommodation provider amongst Tourism Superstar 2024 finalists

18 January 2024
Brickhouse Cottages Owners at the Visit England Awards ©VisitBritain/Daniela Luquini
Brickhouse Cottages Owners at the Visit England Awards ©VisitBritain/Daniela Luquini

VisitEngland has today, Thursday 18 January, revealed the 10 superstars to make the shortlist of its annual search to find the unsung hero of England’s tourism industry, and we’re pleased to see that Ian & Sue Rainford, owners of Lancashire Tourism Awards 2023 winner Brickhouse Cottages are on the list!

VisitEngland’s Tourism Superstar competition, now in its 12th year, seeks out champions currently working in tourism who provide unforgettable visitor experiences, as well as showcasing the variety and quality of England’s tourism offer and destinations.

The 10 finalists were selected out of dozens of submissions from employers and destinations across England covering all areas of tourism. The finalists now go on to compete for the title of Tourism Superstar, decided by a public vote this year run on VisitEngland’s website.

Ian and Sue are owners of Hambleton based Brickhouse Cottages, an accommodation service which specialises in accommodation for people with disabilities and their families. They were inspired to create the business on their farm when their youngest daughter’s life was changed after being involved in a road traffic accident. Brickhouse Cottages provides a home away from home for disabiled guests and their families, with fully accessible accommodation, hydrotherapy pool, sensory room and the Lakeside Kitchen restaurant.

VisitEngland Director Andrew Stokes said:

“We have the most wonderful people working in our industry and Tourism Superstar is about recognising those individuals who go the extra mile to make visitor experiences truly special. Whether discovering a city from its waterways, exploring a destination led by volunteers, running a cycle hire non-profit or showcasing culinary delights with food tours, these individuals truly go above and beyond in their roles as tourism ambassadors. 

“I congratulate the 10 finalists and wish them every success in the competition, though of course they are all superstars already. I also encourage everyone to get involved and cast their votes once the competition opens.”

VistEngland’s Tourism Superstar 2024 finalists are:

  1. Emily Williamson, founding guide, Pub Tours Ltd, Peak District 
  2. Field Sport UK, Leicestershire
  3. Sue & Ian Rainford, Brickhouse Farm Cottages, Lancashire
  4. Pete Chambers, The Coventry Music Museum
  5. Lily-Rose Sheppard, Paddlesport Guide, Roundhouse Birmingham
  6. Isle of Wight Ramblers: David Howarth, David Yates and Linda Jones
  7. Liam White, Animal Manager, Fairytale Farm, Chipping Norton
  8. Robert Dennis Brown, Dalby Forest Cycle Hub, North York Moors National Park
  9. Bury St Edmunds Tour Guides
  10. Amy Whitfield, Triple A Food Tours, North East of England

The public will be able to vote for their favourite superstar on VisitEngland’s website from mid-February when the competition officially opens. Short films of all the finalists, carrying out their duties in their tourism roles, promoting their local destinations, will be shown on VisitEngland’s website to support with voting. Voting closes at the end of English Tourism Week (ETW). ETW takes place from 15-24 March 2024.

The superstar with the highest number of votes is crowned winner at the end of the competition. The Tourism Superstar award is handed out in spring at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence event. 

For more information on VisitEngland’s Tourism Superstar 2024 finalists go to 

Tourism is one of England’s largest and most valuable industries, supporting hundreds of thousands of small-to-medium sized businesses, employing 2.6 million people and, in 2022, generating £66 billion for the economy in domestic visitor spending.

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