THE finalists have been announced in the Dorset Tourism Awards after a 40 per cent rise in entries.

Sixty trophies will be presented to businesses and individuals at a ceremony on October 13 at the Tank Museum in Bovington.

Nick Fernyhough of headline sponsor Saffery Champness and a member of the judging panel said: “We are delighted to be the headline sponsor for yet another year for these prestigious awards which reward excellence in this essential sector of the Dorset economy. We really like how the awards have expanded to reflect the changing shape of tourism.”

Robin Barker of Services for Tourism, which created and manages the awards, said: “Dorset is one of England’s most spectacular and attractive destinations with many outstanding tourism businesses. It is gratifying to see them being identified in this growing programme and to reward them for their innovation, dedication and excellence.”

Winners will automatically be considered for the South West Tourism Excellence Awards in February 2017 with the chance to go on to represent Dorset at the National VisitEngland Awards.

The finalists were as follows.

Small Hotel/Boutique Accommodation (sponsored by Laceys Solicitors): Best Western The Grange, Oborne, Sherborne; Cliff House Hotel, Bournemouth; Grove Hotel Bournemouth; Kings Arms, Christchurch.

Small Attraction (sponsored by Darren Northeast PR): Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum, Bournemouth; Sand World Weymouth; Town Mill, Lyme Regis.

Camping, Caravanning & Holiday Park (Hoseasons): Newlands Holiday Park, Charmouth; South Lytchett Manor Caravan and Camping Park, Poole; Wareham Forest Tourist Park.

Access & Inclusivity (Purple Cloud): Ellwood Cottages, Blandford; Moors Valley Country Park and Forest, Ashley Heath.

Café & Tearoom (Hotel & Catering Show): Little Pickle Deli Café, Boscombe; Symondsbury Kitchen, Bridport; Taste Brasserie, Dorchester.

Tourism Event & Festival (Bournemouth University): Dorset Chilli Festival, Blandford; Shake and Stir Vintage Festival, Bournemouth; Stompin’ on the Quomps Community Interest Company, Christchurch; Tankfest, Bovington;

Bournemouth Wheels Festival.

Bed & Breakfast (Goadsby): Dorset House, Lyme Regis; Swallows Rest B & B, Weymouth; Swanage Haven.

Venue & Business Tourism Award (Saffery Champness): BH Live in partnership with Business Events Bournemouth; Symondsbury Estate, Bridport; Italian Villa, Poole.

Tourist Information Service (Resort Marketing): Bournemouth TIC; Discover Purbeck Information Centre, Wareham; Swanage TIC.

Tourism Experience (Real Recruitment Solutions): Dorset Day Trips, Poole; Go Ape Moors Valley; RNLI College, Poole; RockReef on Bournemouth Pier.

Sustainable Tourism (Dorset Cereals): Bagwell Farm Touring Park, Weymouth; Moors Valley Country Park and Forest, Ashley Heath.

International Visitor Experience (Italian Villa): Lancombe Country Cottages & Lodges, Dorchester; Tank Museum, Bovington.

Large Hotel of the Year: Christchurch Harbour Hotel & Spa, Christchurch; Hilton Bournemouth; The PIG on the Beach, Swanage.

Large Attraction (Take One Media): Farmer Palmers Farm Park, Poole; Monkey World Ape Rescue Centre, Wareham; Swanage Railway.

Tourism Pub (Porter Dodson): Acorn Inn, Dorchester; Anchor Inn, Seatown; White Post, Rimpton.

Dog Friendly Business (Aztec Media): B +B Weymouth; Bagwell Farm Touring Park, Weymouth; Grove Arms, Shaftesbury.

Glamping Business ( Caalm Camp, Shaftesbury; Old Forge, Shaftesbury.

Self Catering (Quality in Tourism): Greenwood Grange, Dorchester; Lancombe Country Cottages & Lodges, Dorchester; Symondsbury Estate, Bridport.

Restaurant/Bistro (Dorset Food & Drink): Eastbury Hotel, Sherborne; Koh Thai Tapas, Poole; Dorset Burger Company, Weymouth; The PIG – on the Beach, Swanage.

The Unsung Hero Award for Customer Service (Bournemouth Water Business Services), Outstanding Contribution to Dorset Tourism and Winner of Winners (Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership) will be announced on the night.