Birmingham voted Best UK City at annual travel awards

Birmingham has been named the Best UK City to visit by readers of Group Leisure magazine, the country’s leading publication for group travel organisers.


The city was recognised at a special awards ceremony held at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole on Wednesday evening to coincide with the first day of the Group Leisure & Travel Trade Show at the NEC. Birmingham saw off competition from three other finalists – Liverpool, London and York.

Birmingham’s success follows record visitor numbers to the city in 2012, with 33.8 million people contributing £5.1 billion to its local economy, supporting more than 61,000 jobs.

The award was presented to Visit Birmingham, the city’s leisure tourism programme, by television presenter and former rugby union international Martin Bayfield and Managing Editor of Group Leisure magazine Rob Yandell.

Emma Gray, Director of Marketing Services at Visit Birmingham, said:

It is a tremendous accolade for Birmingham to be recognised as the Best UK City by the readers of Group Leisure Magazine – and further evidence of its popularity as a leisure tourism destination, particularly within the group travel market.

The city has attracted an 11% increase in visitors over the last six years as people continue to discover all it has to offer – from its fantastic attractions and events to its famed hospitality.

We’re currently building up to another busy festive period in the city. Last year, Visit Birmingham’s ‘Meet and Greet’ service saw a 40% increase in the number of passengers and coaches to the city’s Frankfurt Christmas Market. We are looking forward to welcoming even more visitors here this Christmas and remain committed to ensuring that groups have a great time in Birmingham.

Launched in 1997, the Group Leisure Awards honour the country’s best destinations, shows, attractions and companies based on readers’ experiences as group travel organisers. A total of 21 awards were handed out on the night, including Best Event for Groups and Best UK Resort.

Rob Yandell, Managing Editor of Group Leisure, added:

I have seen so much positive change in what Birmingham offers the leisure traveller in recent years and it’s wonderful to see that the city is delivering a first class experience for groups. Hopefully this award will result in even more people adding Birmingham to their wish list – congratulations.

For more information about travelling as a group in Birmingham go to, where visitors can create individual itineraries, find out more information about the city’s attractions and download a free coach map showing authorised drop-off and pick-up points within Birmingham.

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