The four finalists for the Group Travel Organiser of the Year Award® 2017 will soon be revealed after the judging day took place in London.

Judges (left to right)%3A Andy Booth%2C Keeley Rodgers%2C Oliver Williams and Glen Thomas

Candidates were invited to the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington for the judging day and to talk about their role and experiences as a group travel organiser.

The winner of the award will be announced at the Group Leisure & Travel Awards ceremony held at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole on Wednesday 11th October. The awards were launched in 1997 and have now been rewarding the best in the group travel industry for 20 years. Magician and TV presenter, Ben Hanlin will be this year’s special guest and co-host.

With a first prize of £2,000 to spend on a holiday, the Group Travel Organiser of the Year Award® recognises a deserving winner, who’s not only a great organiser but who makes a difference to the lives of the people in their groups.

After months of entries and nominations, GTOs were asked to complete a questionnaire to tell us more about their work. A shortlist of four was drawn up and the finalists were invited to the judging day on Wednesday 30th August.

The judging panel was made up of:

•    Rob Yandell, publisher of Group Leisure & Travel
•    Keeley Rodgers, editor of Group Leisure & Travel
•    Glen Thomas of Travelsphere Holidays (official 2017 award partner)
•    Andy Booth, Group Travel Organiser of the Year 2011
•    Oliver Williams from Isle of Wight Tours and winner of The Excellence Award 2016

Keeley Rodgers, editor of Group Leisure & Travel magazine said: “I’d like to congratulate all of our finalists for making it to the shortlist and for attending the judging day.

“The quality of candidates was very high again this year and it was a privilege to hear more from the group travel organisers. I’d also like to thank all of the judges for their help with the process and we’re now looking forward to revealing our winner at the ceremony in October.”

Keep your eyes peeled on with details of the finalists revealed soon and the winner announced on the evening of the Group Leisure & Travel Awards 2017.

Last year’s winner

Christine Taylor of Wye Valley Theatre & Travel Club, who won the Group Travel Organiser of the Year Award® 2016, used her prize money to take a holiday to the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Christine will be seeing whether the area will make a suitable future group holiday and sharing her experiences of the trip in the October edition of GLT.

The awards dinner and ceremony - be there

The Group Leisure & Travel Awards dinner and ceremony will take place on Wednesday 11th October at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel and tickets are available now.

It’s without doubt, the biggest and most important night in group travel each year, and a fantastic event for networking, entertaining, rewarding… and of course celebrating.

For more information about the GLT Awards, visit