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Running Thames City cruises' earns top family business award

PUBLISHED: 18:02 17 February 2010 | UPDATED: 15:37 05 October 2010

Passing Tower Bridge... one of City Cruises fleet

Passing Tower Bridge... one of City Cruises fleet

A FAMILY business running pleasure cruises on the Thames has picked up a business award. City Cruises has been named London regional winner of the Best UK Family Business' awards in the Coutts Prize for Family Business

By Mike Brooke

A FAMILY business running pleasure cruises on the Thames has picked up a prestigious business award.

City Cruises has been named London regional winner of the Best UK Family Business’ awards in the £5m-£25m turnover category of the fifth annual Coutts Prize for Family Business.

The company now goes on to compete in the national finals in London on June 8, taking on rivals from all over the country.

Its Thames tourist services carry a-million passengers a year on sightseeing, entertainment and charter cruises.

“The thing that impressed us was a strong sense of family’ that permeates the business in everything they do,” said Coutts’ evaluation committee chair Christopher Oughtred. “There was also emphasis on training and development coupled with the commitment shown by the next generation.”

The first and second generation of the Beckwith family run City Cruises’ fleet of 14 pleasure boats with support vessels and barges carrying more than a-million passengers a year.

The company run buy Rita and Gary Beckwith operates from Tower Pier as well as Greenwich, Westminster and Waterloo piers. It has grown out of a traditionally fragmented Thames pleasure boat industry on the major sightseeing route between the Tower of London and Houses of Parliament.

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