Most Coach Friendly Shopping Attraction

This award is designed to recognise and reward shopping attractions who have gone 'that extra mile' to accommodate, attract, and welcome coaches, their drivers and their passengers.

It was once again a very close contest this year between attractions which had done a great deal of hard work in this area.

Winner: Gloucester Quays

FAcilities at Gloucester Quays in the city's historic docksSet in the historic docks, Gloucester Quays Outlet Shopping centre comprises over 50 outlet stores, restaurants and cafes. There are numerous special events throughout the year.

The management of Gloucester Quays understand the importance of the group travel market and go out of their way to welcome this business. This includes a personal meet and greet service for pre-booked coaches.

The judges were impressed by the positive attitude to customers arriving by coach and the support available to operators, their drivers and passengers.

Runner Up: Bury Market

Offering a warm welcome for coaches - traders at Bury MarketBury Market won the award for Most Coach-Friendly Shopping Attraction in 2011 and was a finalist in 2012, and the town continues to impress.

Bury Market has over 370 stalls and units which are mostly under cover and is ideally located off the M66, a short ride from the M60.

The authorities have been extremely proactive in attracting coach visits and  is unusual among local authorities in the level of support provided to the industry.

The judges were pleased to note that Bury Market is not resting on its laurels, but building on its success and obvious strengths.

Commended: Birmingham Christmas Markets

Attractions at Birmingham's Christmas marketBirmingham Christmas Markets for 2012 took place in Birmingham city centre for the five weeks up to 22nd December. The markets were free and consisted of the Frankfurt German market and the Craft market.

The German market is authentic and the largest of its kind outside Germany. There is a funfair with a carousel, swings, big wheel and children’s rides to complement the markets, which are run by Birmingham City Council.

The judges noted the way in which coach operators are allocated arrival slots to ensure local resources are not stretched. This and other aspects of the initiative made the entry worthy of commendation.

Who could be nominated?

Shopping attractions around the UK including markets, mills, out of town shopping centres and town or city centre shopping centres.

… and by whom

Coach operators were asked to nominate attractions whose service they have admired during the last 12 months, to explain why they think the nominated attraction deserves this award.

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