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York Viking Up For Award


1:33pm 28th January 2013

Colleen Davanney – better known to many as JORVIK Viking Centre’s Frigga Boardotter – has been shortlisted to become VisitEngland’s Tourism Superstar of 2013, it has been announced today. 


Colleen, who was nominated for the accolade by Visit York, is one of a total of ten potential superstars who have been shortlisted for the Tourism Superstar Award 2013 which first launched last year as part of English Tourism Week. 


The title recognises the dedication and passion of people working in the tourism industry, and highlights those who go above and beyond the call of duty to ensure visitors have a priceless experience, say Visit England.


David Scott, head of marketing at York Archaeological Trust, says: “As a re-enactor for JORVIK Viking Centre and Barley Hall (as Mistress Crabby) in York, Colleen has been telling tales of the Vikings and Tudors for over ten years.  She weaves spell-binding stories and brings history to life with passion and knowledge to educate and entertain visitors of all ages, backgrounds and interests.


“In essence, Colleen is the face of JORVIK, welcoming thousands of visitors to the centre every year and making it the world-famous experience that it is. She is also a Viking Festival stalwart, and will be found once again at the Coppergate Camp demonstrating artefacts and weaponry at this year’s festival.”


Kay Hyde, head of PR and communications at Visit York is keen to encourage the city to get behind Colleen when voting opens for the awards next month: “We’re delighted that Colleen has made it to the shortlist out of hundreds of entries, this is a great achievement already.  Colleen’s enthusiasm for and dedication to entertaining York’s visitors is quite simply an inspiration.  We hope that everyone in the region will root for Colleen when public votes open in February.”


Award organisers, VisitEngland, have teamed up with The Daily Mirror to host a public vote.  From February, short films of all nominees will be found on, where readers can vote for their favourite.  Voting will commence in February with the winner announced during English Tourism Week (16-26 March).

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