Press release issued 29.11.19
Mid-Devon couple celebrate glamping success at tourism awards
A couple from mid-Devon are celebrating today after winning bronze at the 2019 Devon Tourism Awards last night. Katie Parsons and Mark Hammond who run Blackdown Yurts near Cullompton, together with their children Mia and Felix, scooped the award in the Glamping and Alternative Accommodation category at a prestigious ceremony held on Thursday at the Riviera Centre in Torquay.
The award is a huge success for the couple, who only moved to the area from Surrey in 2016 and had never worked in the tourism industry before.
‘As anybody in this sector knows, running an establishment like this is incredibly hard work, and it’s something that our whole family mucks in and helps with’ says Katie. ‘To be recognised in this category is such a huge achievement for us and has given us a real boost. We love what we do, but it means even more to know that other people love it too!’
The slide into Winter is a fantastic time to look back and reflect on past achievements and to plan for the future. This Autumn we have been revelling in the announcement that Blackdown Yurts has been made finalist in the Glamping and Alternative Accommodation category of the 2019 Devon Tourism Awards. For a little more than a month we have been wondering whether we will achieve Gold, Silver or Bronze at the awards ceremony. We haven't got long to wait now (the awards ceremony is on Thursday night in Torquay!), but whatever colour our award turns out to be we are over the moon to be considered one of the top three Glamping sites in Devon.
It is a very welcome endorsement of all of the hard work we and our team have put in during the last three years and eight months since we arrived at Halsbeer Farm and Blackdown Yurts in March 2016. Many of our guests ask how we ended up out here in the Devon countryside running a glamping site. Neither Mark nor I (Katie) have any background in the tourism sector other than the experience of going on plenty of holidays ourselves! So how on Earth did we end up here?