The Gold Accolade has been awarded to just 19 attractions, with Trentham Gardens featuring alongside Chester Zoo, HM Tower of London and Blists Hill Victorian Town.
It recognises the high standard achieved as part of VisitEngland’s Visitor Attraction Quality Scheme, which involves a scoring system based on an annual unannounced assessment by VisitEngland.
Introduced in 2014, the scheme scrutinises those things which matter most to visitors, including customer service, catering and facilities, and aims to recognise attractions which go the extra mile to create an enjoyable and memorable visitor experience.
Mike Herbert, Director of The Trentham Estate and Regional Director of St. Modwen Properties PLC, said: “Our Gold VisitEngland Accolade is a wonderful testament to the passion and hard work of all of our staff at The Trentham Estate.
“We have so many people to thank for this. The award is something the people of Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire can be proud of too, as they are the ones who have taken the Estate and Trentham Gardens to heart.
“Achieving this standard of excellence couldn’t have come at a better time, as we celebrate the 300th anniversary of ‘Capability’ Brown and VisitEngland’s Year of the English Garden, together with a 14 per cent increase in paid visits to Trentham Gardens during 2015. 2016 also happens to be St. Modwen’s 30th Anniversary.
“We take huge pride in ensuring guests have a great experience on every visit, and I’m delighted this has been recognised with the highest accolade in English tourism.”
Sally Balcombe, Chief Executive of VisitEngland, said: “These attractions have received an accolade either for their warm welcome, unique storytelling or high-quality food and drink; ensuring an all-round quality experience for visitors.
“The accolades reflect the wide variety of world-class attractions on offer in England and provide the perfect reason to book a visit.”
Trentham Gardens is the only Staffordshire attraction to receive an accolade this year, among members which include museums, galleries, historic houses, churches, cathedrals and country parks.