Dunwood Travel held its first Conference and Awards since 2019 at the new Potters Five Lakes resort in Essex at the start of January.

Dunwood Conference & Awards

Colin Dunwood speaking at the Awards evening. 

The three-day event attracted almost 400 people, including many leading group travel organisers. Guests arrived on Wednesday 4th January for a fully inclusive experience and were treated to an excellent dinner plus entertainment.

The morning conference on 5th January welcomed the MD of Potters Resorts, John Potter, who gave an entertaining and insightful talk about how the new Five Lakes resort in Essex was created, and revealed the culture and philosophy of the business.

He also explained Potters Resorts’ all-inclusive approach to holiday packages which received a warm response from GTOs.

Dunwood conference

Enjoying a spot of bowls at the new Five Lakes Resort in Essex.

Phil Westwood and Colin Duncan of Dunwood Travel talked openly about the company, its history and how it dealt with Covid, including its transparent policy of giving full refunds (around £1.3m) to those who wanted them having booked trips that were affected by the pandemic.

They also covered the future expansion of the Dunwood coach fleet and outlined a new programme of trips and holidays for 2023 into 2024. A mini-exhibition followed the conference featuring Dunwood suppliers and then an afternoon of activities was enjoyed by many.

Dunwood conference & awards

Phil Westwood (left) and Colin Duncan (right) of Dunwood Travel, recognise Zoe Poston who won The Excellence Award as part of the Group Leisure & Travel Awards 2022.

Later, an Awards evening recognised a variety of GTOs and there were also awards for Dunwood coach drivers who were clearly very popular with guests.

Graham Yandell from Group Leisure & Travel re-presented Dunwood with their 2022 GLT Awards trophy for the Best Coach or Tour Operator – UK Tours, Zoe Poston with her trophy for winning The Excellence Award, and Potters Resorts with its award for Best Accommodation for Groups.

Guests enjoyed a variety of entertainment after the awards, courtesy of Potters Resorts in the impressive Glade Theatre.

Commenting on the occasion, Colin Duncan of Dunwood Travel said: “It’s been fantastic to be back following the interruption created by Covid and staging the event at the impressive Potters Five Lakes and meeting so many friends has been marvellous.

“We had a great year in 2022 and are really looking forward to 2023.”