Thanet born and bred, Sam Watling, is one of ten finalists in VisitEngland’s Annual Tourism Superstar competition. This prestigious award, now in its seventh year, celebrates the dedication and passion of those working in the tourism industry in England, with winners decided by public vote.
Having won the council’s Tourism Superstar award at the Pride in Thanet Tourism Awards in 2017, Sam, who is head coach at Revolution Skatepark, was then nominated by Thanet District Council Tourism Team for this national award from VisitEngland and has already beaten some stiff competition to make the shortlist.
On finding out that he had made the shortlist, Sam said: “I am surprised and honoured to be shortlisted, particularly as I get to do a job I love so much. I’m also super excited for this to be announced so that I can tell people and get everything started.”
Sam started working at Revolution Skatepark and Climbing Centre in Broadstairs, ten years ago as a school leaver. Now head instructor for all skateboard and scooter lessons, Sam sees making sure the kids have as much fun as possible as his number one priority. He says “I love every single part of my job.” He’s also a big fan of Thanet and frequently tells visitors how great the area is and shares top tips on how best to enjoy the isle. This passion shines through to his customers and it’s why he is one of the district’s best loved ambassadors.
Consistently going the extra mile for visitors, Sam works hard to ensure they have an unforgettable day out. On Boxing Day, which should have been his day off, he went into work especially, because he was the person a child wanted to have a lesson with and he didn’t want to disappoint.
His customers are highly complimentary and say that he “goes above and beyond to ensure everyone has a memorable and rewarding experience” and is a “wonderful ambassador for the skateboarding world.” They also praise how he helps his young students improve, saying: “His patience and kindness helps many children gain confidence and develop their skateboarding and scootering skills.”
Cllr Hunter Stummer Schmertzing, Thanet District Council Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Enterprise Services commented: “It is a testament to his commitment, passion and dedication that Sam Watling has now been shortlisted for such a prestigious national award. Thanet has a thriving tourism offering and businesses such as Revolution Skatepark, which has been open for twenty years, are vital in maintaining the areas status as a popular day out destination.
“It is people like Sam that make our visitors’ experiences memorable and leave them with a positive impression of the area. I would urge anyone who has had the chance to see Sam in action or enjoyed the Skatepark to vote. It is a great way to create recognition of his outstanding work and winning awards continues to put Thanet on the map and drive visitors to the district.”
VOTE NOW to help Sam Watling win vote for him here:
In order to win Sam Watling needs votes from the public. Here are Sam Watling’s three reasons to vote for him:
A vote for me is a vote for all at Revolution Skatepark and Climbing Centre, both the staff and our customers.
I’m passionate about what I do and give 100% all the time, whether that is giving someone a lesson or helping out in the shop.
I would like to win as a ‘thank you’ to everyone and because it would be great for Thanet as an area and our youth.
The winner will be announced in Saturday’s Mirror on 24 March 2018 to coincide with English Tourism Week and they will be presented with their award at VisitEngland’s Awards for Excellence ceremony on Monday 23 April.
Notes to editors
About the competition
VisitEngland’s Annual Tourism Superstar competition recognises the dedication and passion of those working in the tourism industry in England. Run in conjunction with the Daily Mirror, the campaign champions careers in tourism (for people of all ages) and promotes quality, customer service and excellence within England’s tourism industry.
Link to votes for Sam Watling: https://www.mirror.co.uk/travel/uk-ireland/meet-finalists-2018-tourism-superstar-11992093
About Revolution Skatepark
Revolution Skatepark was first opened back in 1998 to cater for the large amount of Skateboarders, Inline Skaters and BMX’ers in the Thanet and Kent area, as well as reaching out to other skaters all across the country and even the world. It offers lessons, parties, school holiday camps, competitions or just an enjoyable day out and people travel from far and wide to join in the fun.
Its Climbing Centre opened in December 2002 and has all the facilities needed to offer even the most talented of climbers a challenge. Since the Skatepark and Climbing Centre was first designed, there have been many changes to improve it and keep it exciting. In the last few years, it has created two new bowls, surfaced the whole street course, and even built an extension to the park with a brand new warehouse. The climbing centre is constantly changing its routes and adding new obstacles to keep the routes fresh.