THE Lake District is in the running for a World Responsible Tourism Award.
It has been named in the 'best destination category' in a long-list of 20 locations including Arizona, Reykjavik, Puebla in Mexico and the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.
All of the nominations have been selected as holiday destinations which “set an inspirational and influential example for responsible tourism”.
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The longlist is the first step towards deciding this year’s selection of the most exciting and enduring holiday experiences in the world.
It means the Lake District, Cumbria, will now go through to the second stage of the Awards, which will see an international judging panel scrutinise detailed statistics and information about the county’s sustainable travel policies, practices and achievements.
Cumbria’s nomination focuses on four key projects:
The GoLakes Travel Programme is one of only a handful of Local Sustainable Transport Fund Programmes, funded by the Department for Transport aimed at visitors. The project is supporting 'behaviour change' through physical improvements like improved public transport, safe, continuous networks for walking, cycling and wheelchair use, pay-as-you-go car and cycle hire fleets and recharge stations for electric vehicles.
Low Carbon Lake District is a wide-ranging initiative which is promoting energy-efficient buildings, local food and drink, and greener business. The project is not only cutting carbon but also helping businesses reduce costs and become more sustainable for the future. It has achieved a carbon reduction of 3 per cent since its inception in 2010.
Visitor Giving: Set up by Nurture Lakeland, Visitor Giving works with local businesses to provide opportunities for visitors to give something back to look after the place they love. The scheme has raised over £2.2 million in the last 20 years and support a host of conservation projects around Cumbria, working to sustain this special landscape.
Fair Booking: Cumbria Tourism, the county’s official tourist board, has recently pioneered the FairBooking campaign, which aims to provide the best accommodation deal for customers and a better deal for the local tourism industry. Cumbria has been heavily involved in developing the scheme nationally and is one of the first UK destinations to offer the FairBooking facility.
Gemma Procter, based at Cumbria Tourism and from the GoLakes Travel Programme, is spearheading Cumbria’s nomination.
She said: “Getting through to the next stage of these prestigious international awards is absolutely fantastic. Sustainable Tourism is a vital part of providing a world class experience for the 16 million people who visit the Lake District every year, and it’s great to be involved with one of the key projects which is helping to preserve our spectacular landscape and vibrant local communities for the benefit of visitors and residents alike.”
Steve Ratcliffe, director at the Lake District National Park congratulated the projects involved in the award submission.
He said: “We are delighted that the Lake District has reached the longlist for the award. Through working in partnership, we have developed inspiring projects which are making the Lake District a world class destination whilst maintaining our firm commitment to responsible tourism.”'
For more details, visit www.responsibletravel.com