Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter (WBSTL) has been named winner of the Large Visitor Attraction of the Year award, sponsored by Howes Percival, at the East of England Tourism Awards 2022-2023

WBSTL is a unique attraction in Watford, Hertfordshire offering fans the opportunity to go behind the scenes of one of the most successful film series of all time.

Located at the studios where all eight Harry Potter films were produced, WBSTL has welcomed over 16 million visitors since opening in March 2012.

The attraction showcases the British talent and artistry that went into creating the Wizarding World – letting visitors step onto authentic sets, discover the magic behind special effects and explore the hidden secrets of the film series.

The judges described WBSTL as “a powerhouse of an experience for all the family” and an “explosive assault on the senses throughout, so much so that a sensory room has now been incorporated into the tour so that weary guests can take a break halfway through.”

They also said the attention to detail throughout is “phenomenal”, adding that “every minute detail of every film has been incorporated into the tour such that even an enthusiast could find answers to any question they may want answering”.

Geoff Spooner, SVP and general manager of WBSTL, said: "It’s fantastic for our staff to be recognised for the incredible work they do to consistently exceed visitor expectations and their commitment to continually enhance the experience.

"We are 100% focused on continuously improving the visitor experience and delivering that 'wow factor', whether that be with a new feature, expansion or event."

About the sponsor

Howes Percival is a leading commercial law firm offering a wide range of legal expertise, from corporate, employment, property, licensing, planning and litigation, to estate planning and tax law.

The firm has a wealth of experience advising clients in the leisure and tourism industry. In a sector that is greatly influenced by economic change, it understands the business challenges that clients face and the need to respond quickly to opportunities in the industry.

Its clients range from international corporations to family-owned businesses working across the full spectrum of the leisure and tourism sector.

The finalists

Silver - BeWILDerwood

Located in Hoveton, Norfolk, BeWILDerwood is a 20-acre adventure park based on the setting of ‘A Boggle at BeWILDerwood’, a children’s book written by local author Tom Blofeld.

First opened in May 2007, the attraction is filled with zip lines, slides, mazes and treehouses, as well as other free activities and special events throughout the year. 

The judges described BeWILDerwood as a “fantastic outdoor venue for everyone to enjoy nature” and praised its “wonderful, friendly and knowledgeable team members who make a special effort to engage with children”. 

Bronze - ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure

ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure in Lenwade, Norfolk is the largest dinosaur-themed adventure park in the UK, attracting an average of 275,000 visitors each year. 

In the last 16 years, Martin and Adam Goymour have developed ROARR! into a multi-weather park with over 25 different attractions, including animatronic dinosaurs in natural settings.

The judges said ROARR! is a great attraction with targeted activities to inform, educate and provide fun in the process. They also praised the interactivity and customer service.