Winners of the Devon Primary Times Reader Star Awards 2019

Local families vote for favourite places in the Primary Times Reader Star Awards 2019


The best of what Devon has to offer families is revealed in the results of this year’s Primary Times Star Awards, as voted for by parents of children aged 4 to 11 years in the county. This year saw the greatest ever response to the Primary Times online survey where readers voted for their favourite local family friendly places and people.

Local parents were informed of the survey in Primary Times, a family friendly magazine that is delivered directly to primary schools across Devon. With a distribution of 57,000 copies the magazine reaches 307 primary schools in the county.

The specially designed online survey appeared on the Primary Times website from July to October. Questions in the survey were formulated to incite open and honest replies from readers. The results are truly organic, with the winning awards given to the attraction that gained the most reader nominations in a particular category.

The outcome of the survey is of special importance to many local businesses who value the insightful nature of the award results, as the families who complete the survey are often customers or potential customers.

In addition, the results provide an interesting snapshot of what is popular with families at this current time. It’s a way of local families recommending venues and attractions that deliver good quality service and provision to other readers.

Winning an award is a real accomplishment and many winners proudly display their certificates at their venues and promote it on their marketing material.

Aside from the overall winner, there were 10 different categories asking readers for their favourite: family attraction (full day out); family attraction (half day out); indoor play or activity centre; outdoor play centre; party venue or entertainer; free local family event; best seasonal event of the year; local fair, show or festival; best family holiday or break in the region; best value for money attraction.

The results, which can now be revealed, give the winners’ a well-deserved round of applause…


And this year’s winners are…

Once again, the highly desired Family Attraction award was split into two categories to accommodate the places where people like to spend their time for a full day out and for a half day out.

Winning the Family Attraction Award (for a Full Day Out), for the ninth consecutive year, was Crealy Adventure Park and Resort. This much-loved attraction continues to add variety with new events and attractions year-on-year. This added interest, along with its existing fun rides and play areas, really hits the mark with local families who visit the park regularly. Woodlands Family Theme Park was the runner-up in this category.

The best Family Attraction (for a Half Day Out) Award includes places where people may visit, perhaps, for a few hours but on a frequent basis, or attractions that offer timed schedules. The Donkey Sanctuary was chosen as the winner in this category. This beautiful attraction is a big hit with Primary Times’ readers and its wide range of events, free entry and free parking tempts local families to return again and again. The runner-up in this category was Planet Play, the fun indoor play centre in Crediton.

The online offers, reasonable membership rates and 6-Day free return tickets make a visit to Crealy fantastic value, enabling it to pick up the top prize in the ‘Best Value for Money Attraction’ category for the second year running. Woodlands was the runner-up in this group.

The importance of outdoor play and its positive effect on children makes the Outdoor Play category a particularly significant one. Crealy won this category, closely followed by The Bear Trail. The Indoor Play award, another highly valued prize, was scooped up by Crealy, with the indoor play activities at Ocean in Exmouth coming a close second.

The entertaining events and family orientated activities at the Devon County Show, enabled it to be chosen as the favourite Local Fair, Show or Festival for 2019. The week-long Exmouth Festival was runner-up in this category.

The highly prized category of Party Venue and Entertainer is always fiercely contested as the quality of party entertainment in the area is first class. Planet Play acquired the highest number of votes, largely because of its good-value for money party packages, whilst the fun party options at iBounce in Exeter enabled it to take second place.

The award for favourite Free Local Family Event was won by The Donkey Sanctuary for its Summer Fair where children went free. The second highest number of votes in this category went to Torbay Children’s Week.

A new category for this year was Best Seasonal Event. The Crealy Christmas Spectacular was chosen as the best event by the readers of Primary Times, followed by Santa’s Magical Kingdom at Otter Nurseries.

Another new category for 2019 was the Best Family Holiday or Break. The wonderful family friendly facilities and accommodation at Devon Cliffs Holiday Park enabled it to get the top prize in this group, followed by Crealy Meadows.

The blue-ribbon category, that of Overall Winner, asked readers to think about their favourite attraction which offered them the best overall experience. Collectively, readers chose Crealy Adventure Park and Resort as their Overall Winner for 2019. Woodlands Family me Park gained the runner’s-up prize in this prestigious category.

Linda Edwards, Publishing Editor at Primary Times said: “We are so grateful to our readers for their valued contribution to our Reader Star Awards. The results are incredibly insightful which allows us to take a glimpse into the minds of local people, discovering what the children enjoy most. We would like to applaud all the individual winners and runners-up of each category and congratulate them on their success. In particular, we would like to commend Crealy Adventure Park and Resort on winning the particularly significant Overall Winner award for the ninth consecutive year. Crealy’s skilful ability to consistently deliver high standards with innovation is incredibly impressive and keeps them in a strong position as market leader. Winning a number of awards across several categories is an example of consistent practice and good management”.


Regional winners in Devon are as follows:


Overall Winner

Winner: Crealy Theme Park and Resort

Runner up: Woodlands Family Theme Park


Family Attraction (Full Day Out)

Winner: Crealy Theme Park and Resort

Runner up: Woodlands Family Theme Park


Indoor Play / Activity Centre

Winner: Crealy Theme Park and Resort

Runner up: Ocean, Exmouth


Outdoor Play Centre

Winner: Crealy Theme Park and Resort

Runner up: The Bear Trail


Best Seasonal Event

Winner: Crealy Christmas Spectacular

Runner up: Santa’s Magical Kingdom at Otter Nurseries


Best Value for Money Attraction

Winner: Crealy Theme Park and Resort

Runner up: Woodlands Family Theme Park



Family Attraction (Half Day Out)

Winner: The Donkey Sanctuary

Runner up: Planet Play


Free Local Family Event

Winner: The Donkey Sanctuary

Runner up: Torbay Children’s Week, Paignton



Party Venue / Entertainer

Winner: Planet Play

Runner up: IBounce, Exeter





Local Fair, Show or Festival

Winner: Devon County Show

Runner up: Exmouth Festival






Best Family Holiday / Break

Winner: Devon Cliffs Holiday Park

Runner up: Crealy Meadows






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