British Airways i360 wins gold for Large Visitor Attraction and Unsung Hero at Tourism South East’s Beautiful South Awards
Published: 12 Mar 2021
The British Airways i360 team is celebrating today after winning two gold awards at The Beautiful South Awards yesterday [4th March 2020] - the Unsung Hero Award and the Large Visitor Attraction Award.
The awards are organised by Tourism South East and celebrate excellence in tourism. The ceremony took place remotely and was hosted by Fran Downtown, Chief Executive at Tourism South East and Andrew Moseley, General Manager at The Grand Hotel Brighton.
British Airways i360 Chief Operating Officer, Ian Hart, says: “After an extremely challenging year we are just over the moon to win these highly prestigious awards, against a hugely talented line-up of tourism businesses. We would like to thank the judges, and everyone involved in making British Airways i360 the success it is today. I am immensely proud of every member of the team at BA i360, they are passionate, dedicated, and hard-working individuals and it is fantastic that their efforts have been noticed.
“Rachel Macpherson, Senior Marketing Executive, won the Unsung Hero award which she very much deserves. This award recognises her single-handed creation and management of all marketing communications during the first lockdown, when British Airways i360 was temporarily closed. Rachel created such innovative and appealing content during the lockdown that both followers and engagement rate across all social media accounts grew by more than they had in the same period the previous year. A remarkable achievement given BA i360 was closed at the time so there was little in the way of news, and of course no visitors or events.”
Rachel says: “I joined the i360 team two years and six months ago after completing a degree in communications and media. I was so excited to work for a marketing team in the travel and leisure industry and finally put my degree to use. I feel completely honoured to have been nominated and to have won this award along with 11 other fantastic finalists.
“It was an interesting time to be the only member of the marketing team working during lockdown, when everyone else was furloughed, but I saw it as the next challenge of my role and very much enjoyed the experience. Having to be creative and design and post both innovative and relevant content for social media was tricky at times, when the whole world was talking about one subject, but thanks to my incredible team I never felt alone, and this helped me to stay creative.
“I am incredibly humbled to have received this award as recognition of my work. I see my future very much within this industry, working my way up and following in the footsteps of those higher up in my team and organisation.”
The Large Visitor Attraction award recognised the innovative marketing and PR campaigns that BA i360 has implemented, the attraction’s partnerships with local community organisations, the significant growth achieved in travel trade sales pre-Covid and the company’s sustainable and responsible credentials.
Head of Marketing and Trade Sales, Anna Prior, says: “Winning a Beautiful South Award always means a great deal to us at BA i360. Never more so than now as we start to plan our reopening and to welcoming visitors back to the attraction from 17th May. The Beautiful South Award is a badge of honour that all our team can show off to our customers.”
Fran Downton, Chief Executive of Tourism South East, said, “Congratulations to all our finalists. Achieving excellence is not easy, particularly in the year we have just navigated. All the finalists can be extremely proud of what they have achieved. I was blown away by the quality, positivity, and innovation of the tourism businesses we have across the South East. Many of the winners are truly world class. I am extremely grateful to the sponsors and voluntary judges who make the Awards possible. Thank you also to my co-host and headline sponsor, Andrew from the Grand Brighton, who ensured that although we could not be there in person, all our finalists were extended a warm welcome. We look forward to celebrating with our winners and working alongside them as they lead the way in a year of recovery”.
British Airways i360 Viewing Tower was also commended in the Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Tourism Award which recognises tourism businesses committed to being sustainable, responsible, and ethical in how they operate and interact with customers, the wider community and the environment.
The Unsung Hero award recognises an individual working in any aspect of a tourism business who excels in their role and deserves to be applauded for their work and commitment to the industry. It applauds those individuals who continually go above and beyond, offering exceptional service to visitors.
The Large Visitor Attraction award recognises large visitor attraction businesses providing truly memorable visitor experiences and demonstrating excellence across every aspect of the business. The criteria for entry are 75,000 visitors or more per year or employs more than 10 full-time equivalent members of staff.