Cumbria Tourism Awards winners announced

First published in Business The Westmorland Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A SOUTH Lakeland holiday park team are among those celebrating after scooping gongs in this year’s Cumbria Tourism Awards.

Twelve businesses were honoured with county awards at the black-tie event.

Woodclose Park, based at Kirkby Lonsdale, won Best Holiday Park at the Rheged event, near Penrith.

They were presented with an engraved plaque by BBC’s voice of the National Lottery Draw Alan Dedicoat.

The park’s manager Steven McAvoy said their four staff were thrilled.

Mr McAvoy said: “It was fantastic last night. We weren’t expecting to win but it shows we must be doing something right.

“Our principle is to always treat a visitor well and greet them with a smile. You want their support and you need good word of mouth. A lot of our business comes that way.”

The five-star, nine-acre park, owned by Kendal’s Lake District Estates, now includes 30 static caravans, 15 permanent lodges, five pitches for tents and nine timber wigwams.

Mr McAvoy said: “We pur-chased four of the wooden wigwams four years ago and they’ve been so popular that we’ve bought in five more.

“They are booked up now for the entire school holidays.”

Other winners in this year’s award included Lakeside Hotel and Spa, Newby Bridge, which won the Large Hotel of the Year Award, and Windermere’s Holbeck Ghyll Country House Hotel, which came top in the Small Hotel of the Year category.

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Whinlatter Forest won Large Visitor Attraction of the Year, and Tottergill Farm Holiday Cottages, at Castle Carrock, near Brampton won Self Catering Holiday of the Year.

The Taste Cumbria Award was presented to Overwater Hall, Near Ireby, while Lakeland Photographic Holidays, based in Keswick, won Tourism Experience of the Year.

An award for best Guest Accommodation was scoop-ed by The Cottage in the Wood, in Whinlatter, while the Sustainable Tourism Award of the Year went to The Quiet Site, based in Ullswater.

Jane Jenkinson, from Hill Crest Country Guest House, at Newby Bridge, won an Outstanding Customer Service Award.

Woolfest won the award for Tourism Event of the Year, while multi-award winners Hawkshead Relish won Retail Business of the Year.

A commendation for sustainable tourism was given to Newlands Adventure Centre, while Kendal’s Armstrong Ward was commended in the Retail Business of the Year category.

Cumbria Tourism’s managing director Ian Stephens said: “The winners at the 2012 Cumbria Tourism Awards are prominent ambassadors for Cumbria’s tourism industry and we are all incredibly proud of their achievements. In these tough economic times their achievements are even more significant and now more than ever our tourism industry is absolutely vital to this county and its continued economic development. Our award winners evidence the high quality, and sheer hard work needed to ensure continued success and ensure that their customers keep coming back.‘’

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