WEST Dorset really is the tastiest place to be, if these award winners are anything to go by.

They say the proof is in the pudding. And what more proof do you need than a host of gongs at the Dorset Tourism Awards?

The annual award ceremony, which took place at the Tank Museum, Bovington honoured the best Dorset has to offer across 22 categories. And a number of west Dorset's eateries and accommodation scooped well–deserved awards.

The Dorset Burger Company, Weymouth, was named Restaurant of the Year.

Emma Cogan and Ross Kay, joint owners of the restaurant said: “We were so pleased to finally win Gold at this year’s ceremony, having won bronze for the last two years.”

Elsewhere, Taste Brasserie, Dorchester, was named Tearoom of the Year; Greenwood Grange, Dorchester, was named Self-catering and Dorset House, Lyme Regis, was named Bed and Breakfast of the Year.

Bagwell Farm Touring Park, near Weymouth, scooped silver for Sustainable Business and bronze for Dog Friendly Business.

Park manager, Karen Kennedy, said: "We are absolutely delighted to have been chosen to receive two awards this year.

“It really is a great tribute to the hard work and dedication of the entire team."

Other silver awards in the west went to The Town Mill, Lyme Regis, for Small Attraction of the Year; Lancombe Country Cottages and Lodges, Dorchester, for International Visitor Experience; Symondsbury Estate, Bridport, for Self-catering and Symondsbury Kitchen, also Bridport, for Café and Tearoom of the Year.

About 240 guests attended the awards, which were sponsored by accountancy firm Saffery Champness.

Nick Fernyhough, from the firm, said: “We have been delighted to be the headline sponsor for yet another year for these prestigious awards and congratulate the winners.

“The standard of the competition has been outstanding and it has been good to reward excellence in this essential sector of the Dorset economy.

“The awards are really helping to raise the profile of Dorset and also to raise the quality of the Dorset visitor experience.”

The awards, which were founded by Robin Barker, were judged by an independent panel.

Mr Barker said: “This year had record entries, more sponsors, a capacity event and a further raising in quality. The judges have had their toughest task yet – many congratulations to all of the winners.”

Award winners will now be fast-tracked to the South West Tourism Excellence Awards, to take place in February 2017.