The Stadium of Light, home of Sunderland AFC, has won this year’s bid to host the North East England Tourism Awards in November. The Stadium of Light will welcome the region’s most innovative businesses for an awards evening that will honour the achievements of local businesses and individuals who deliver experiences for the 67m visitors who visit the North East every year.
The North East England Tourism Awards play a major role in showcasing the fantastic range of high quality experiences available for visitors to the North East. The Awards have had a hugely positive impact on tourism in the North East providing a benchmark for all businesses to aspire to. Winners at the North East England Tourism Awards will go on to compete nationally at the VisitEngland’s Excellence Awards.
Gary Hutchinson, Sunderland AFC and 1879 Events Management's Commercial Director, commented: “Sunderland AFC and 1879 Events Management is honoured to host the North East England Tourism Awards 2014 at the Stadium of Light.
“The stadium has had a huge impact on tourism in the region in recent years and we look forward to welcoming the region’s most innovative businesses in November.”
Destination management and marketing agency, NewcastleGateshead Initiative's Chief Executive Sarah Stewart, added: “I am delighted that this year the Awards will take place at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light, which itself is a visitor hotspot, not just in attracting football fans but also music fans with its successful programme of concerts.”
The Sunderland Stadium of Light boasts some of the North-East's finest conference, banqueting and events facilities, providing the perfect venue for any event. It embraces the north east region’s rich and proud heritage whilst offering some of the finest modern day facilities anywhere in the country.
Sunderland AFC won Gold in the Business Tourism category in 2009. Since then the club has launched 1879 Events Management, which manages all corporate and private functions at the stadium.
1879 Events Management has also expanded beyond the stadium and is working with events across the North East, including the Sound Waves concert at Bents Park, South Shields, the annual LGBT festival Newcastle Pride and providing catering and management services at the National Glass Centre in Sunderland.