Lu Ban strikes gold at VisitEngland Awards

Leading Liverpool restaurant Lu Ban scooped a top accolade at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2022. Tony McDonough reports

Dave Critchley
Lu Ban executive chef director Dave Critchley with the VisitEngland award. Picture by VisitEngland/Simon Hadley Photography


Liverpool’s Lu Ban Restaurant was a Gold Award winner at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2022.

Lu Ban, based in the city’s Baltic Triangle, won the Taste of England award. It beat off competition from Moor Hall Restaurant with Rooms, Lancashire, which took silver, and Fischer’s Baslow Hall, Derbyshire, which claimed bronze.

RLB360, which offers tours of the iconic Royal Liver Building in Liverpool won the Silver Award in the Small Visitor Attraction of the Year category. The British Music Experience, also in Liverpool, took bronze in the same category.

Chester Zoo also had a good night. It won Gold in the Large Visitor Attraction of the Year category. And it walked off with a Silver Award in the Resilience and Innovation category. Referring to Lu Ban, the judges commented: “The excellence of gastronomic experience is at the heart of everything they do.”

Lu Ban executive chef director Dave Critchley said: “It feels absolutely incredible to have gone and won the award. We were delighted to have even made it through to the finals and would have been equally as proud walking away with the bronze or silver but to win the gold is obviously really special.

READ MORE; Top Liverpool chef publishes first book

“I’m so incredibly proud of the team and what they’ve achieved in such a small amount of time. It really is testament to what amazing teamwork, hard work and a positive mind set can achieve.”

The ceremony featured finalists from across 15 categories. They were handpicked by tourism industry experts from more than 300 entries to the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2022 from across 14 regions.

Lu Ban Restaurant, which specialises in regional Chinese dishes, earned its chance to be in the final after being named Restaurant of the Year at the Liverpool City Region Tourism awards.

RLB360 was also delighted with its Silver Award. Operations manager Chris Devaney said: “We have welcomed more than 50,000 people to our attraction since opening in 2019. This is some feat considering the closures and challenges we faced during the pandemic.

“We’re still working our way out of it but winning awards like this and being recognised on a national stage will only help and it is true testament to the hard work our staff have put in.”

Click here for the full list of winners

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