An ambassador for one of the world’s most influential travel guides ‘Lonely Planet’, has highlighted The Lake District, Cumbria as one of her favourite places to visit without using a car, thanks to a successful partnership with Cumbria Tourism.

As part of the official destination management organisation’s ongoing efforts to reduce the number of cars on the county’s roads, it formed a partnership with successful blogger Chloe Gunning – known to her online community as ‘Wanderlust Chloe’, who enjoys a combined online audience of almost a quarter of a million people.

Working with transport providers, accommodation and attractions in the northern Lake District, Cumbria Tourism welcomed Chloe and her partner – also a successful travel blogger in his own right, for a four-day visit to the Ullswater area designed specifically to dispel the myths that a car is a much-needed transportation method.

Arriving on the West Coast Main Line by train and getting around the area exclusively by bus, boat, e-bike and on foot, Chloe showcased the area in a special video highlighting the visit, published across both Chloe and Cumbria Tourism’s own channels.

The partnership with Chloe is just one part of Cumbria Tourism’s ongoing campaign to encourage more visitors to leave the car at home and choose more sustainable transport methods.

Chloe, who likes to avoid driving whenever possible, says, “Social media plays a very influential role in destination marketing. Videos in particular, have the power to transport the viewer to a destination they may never have considered visiting before. Whether it’s showcasing the highlights of a region or sharing an important message such as the car-free angle for this visit, it’s easier to connect with people around the world than it’s ever been before. I loved exploring more of the Lake District on my recent trip, and it was great to experience so much across a few days without needing to get behind the wheel.”

Head of Marketing & Partnerships at Cumbria Tourism, Rachel Tyson, says, “As social media becomes an increasingly important way to promote businesses, products and services, it has also become a primary resource for people considering where to take their next holiday. We strongly feel that part of a relaxing break comes by getting away from the car and using other ways of moving around, which Chloe illustrated perfectly. We’re absolutely thrilled with the success of Chloe’s blog and video; and it’s a really strong indicator of how people are choosing to research locations for their next getaway.

“Tourism is absolutely vital for Cumbria’s economy and younger people in particular are becoming increasingly conscious of living a more sustainable lifestyle – not only for their personal wellbeing, but for the heath of their children and many more generations to come. It was a pleasure working with Chloe and look forward to welcoming her again in the future”.

Chloe’s blog attracts around 185,000 views per month, with 430,000 views of her video content on YouTube. In addition, Chloe also enjoys a social media following of nearly 50,000 people.

You can see Chloe’s video on golakes.co.uk here and find all of Chloe’s social media links via her blog, here.

The government’s recently announced sector deal has set out its ambition to make the UK the most accessible tourism destination in Europe by 2025 and with Purple Tuesday highlighting the growing need for change, Cumbria Tourism is supporting next month’s brand-new Tourism for Everyone Conference.

Held at the Low Wood Bay Resort & Spa on the 3rd December and with key speakers from VisitEngland, the Calvert Trust and Lakeland Arts, the event will feature presentations and workshops designed to help tourism businesses increase their awareness of the needs of the customers and how they can change their business practices to better accommodate them.

20% of visits to the county already include at least one member with additional needs and this figure is expected to rise, particularly with the government’s plans projected to increase the number of disabled international visitors by a third.

Justin Farnan, Sales and Marketing Manager at the Calvert Trust, which won the 2019 Cumbria Tourism Award for Accessible Tourism, will be showcasing the Trust’s disability-focused service as a case study for other tourism businesses to take inspiration from. Justin says “As an organisation focussed on providing activity breaks for those with disabilities we’re fully committed to making Cumbria and the Lake District as accessible as possible. Irrespective of whether the disability is physical, learning or sensory – or a combination of all three – we know that a visit to such a beautiful area can have a real therapeutic benefit. A little thought and understanding into how to make an activity, attraction or accommodation unit supportive of visitors with disabilities, and their carers, goes a long way. With over 40 years of operational experience we know first-hand that making your business truly disability-friendly delivers great levels of repeat business as well as bringing in new customers”.

Event organiser and advocate for increased accessibility provisions across Cumbria and beyond Julia Walker from Lake District Mobility says This event is a fantastic opportunity for businesses. Attendees will have a chance to hear first hand personal and business experiences on seen and unseen disabilities.

“20% of tourism visitors to Cumbria include somebody with a disability and this figure is expected to increase in the near future. Therefore, it’s vital that hotels, restaurants and attractions right across the county ensure that they’re open and welcoming to all potential customers. Disability comes in many forms, some more visible than others, and there are many things businesses can do to make peoples’ stays easier and much more welcoming, increasing the chances of them returning again and again.”

Recent successes within the county include the installation of a Changing Places bathroom at the National Trust’s Fell Foot site on Windermere as part of a National Heritage Lottery Fund project within a Grade II listed boathouse – the first of its kind in the Lake District National Park.

Cumbria Tourism will also be increasing awareness around the county’s accessible offering around the event of Purple Tuesday (12th November) for visitors with blog posts and social media highlighting activities suitable for visitors with a wide range of additional needs.

Business representatives can sign up for the event online by visiting www.cumbriatourism.org/shop/access-for-all-conference or by calling Sam Tollerson on 01539 822 222. Tickets cost £20 + VAT.

Hot on the heels of England being named as the second-best country to visit worldwide in 2020, Cumbria Tourism says there are fresh opportunities to grow international visitor markets post-Brexit.

Lonely Planet has just unveiled its ‘Best in Travel 2020’, with England scooping the silver spot (second only to Bhutan). Amid the continuing uncertainty of Brexit, the renowned travel guide publisher says “timeless treasures” such as historic castles, quaint villages and rolling countryside are still big draws for international visitors – all features the Lake District, Cumbria has in abundance.

Meanwhile, it’s predicted that a post-Brexit fall in the value of the pound could make it cheaper for overseas visitors to travel to the UK, as well as making overseas travel more expensive and prompting more UK residents to choose staycations rather than holidaying abroad.

We are encouraging businesses to diversify their international markets and consider overseas visitors from beyond Europe, including core markets such as the USA and emerging audiences including India and China.

Our Sales & Marketing Manager, Sue Clarke, believes tourism and hospitality businesses should continue to feel confident about targeting international markets – whatever the eventual outcome of Brexit.  She says, “Significant work is already being done to attract international visitors. Lake District businesses have been working in Japan for more than 25 years and great work has also been done to develop the China market.  Most recently, Cumbria Tourism has identified India as a key emerging market. If you aren’t currently working with international markets, our advice is always pick the ones that are relevant for YOUR business; this may be an EU country, or it might not be. Don’t avoid targeting European markets if they are actually the best fit for you.

She adds, “We should also remember that domestic visitors are Cumbria’s core market. We’ve seen that people are holding off foreign holidays, so now is the perfect time to capitalise. If people are worried about the financial implications of European holidays post-Brexit, businesses should consider what they can do to make it easy and attractive to the domestic market. We would always recommend you promoting the destination first, and then individual businesses. Inspire your audience, then reassure them about accessibility and ease of travel.”

A packed line-up of specialist speakers have been confirmed for a large-scale Brexit event to help Cumbria’s tourism businesses with their last minute preparations for the UK’s planned departure from the EU.

UKInbound is among the sector-specific experts to be revealed for the free ‘Are you ready for Brexit?’ conference on Tuesday 29 October 2019, alongside speakers covering a range of HR, legal and financial issues which could specifically affect tourism and hospitality businesses.

Suitable for B&Bs/guesthouses, hotels, visitor attractions, retailers and suppliers, the conference at the Low Wood Bay Resort & Spa will also include three practical workshops covering post-Brexit employment issues, recruitment and retention, and protecting sales.

Cumbria-based companies such as Cumberland Business, Thomson Hayton Winkley, Armstrong Watson, Langdale Hotel & Spa and People Junction will all be on hand to help businesses navigate the maze of uncertainty.

 

Helping hospitality staff welcome international customers:

To coincide with Brexit, Cumbria Tourism has also unveiled plans for a free workshop on Welcoming International Customers’ on Wednesday 30 October 2019, at Lindeth Howe Country House Hotel.

Aimed at front-end staff such as receptionists, concierges, and bar and restaurant staff, a specialist trainer will help participants enhance their understanding of different cultures and build the skills and confidence they need to help attract more international visitors. Everyone who successfully completes the training will receive official Welcome to Excellence certification.

Both events are part of a package of activity being spearhead by Cumbria Tourism, after the organisation was awarded funding from the Government’s Business Readiness Fund to tackle Brexit-related areas of concern for the county’s £3billion tourism industry.

Cumbria Tourism is providing additional help and support to tourism businesses through webinars, targeted newsletters, a new microsite, public relations and social media.

 

Businesses can book now for the ‘Are you ready for Brexit?’ conference (Tues 29 Oct) and the Welcoming International Customers course (Weds 30 Oct).

Thousands of pounds are up for grabs to help fund the promotion of events right across Cumbria, with organisers being invited to begin the applications process for a share of the cash now.

The process to apply for grants from the Lakes Hospitality Association (LHA) has been opened-up to everyone for the first time, with a slice of thousands of pounds available for events taking place outside of the busy tourist seasons.

Those who are successful in their applications for a grant will be provided with funds to assist with each event’s public relations and sales & marketing strategies through working with Cumbria Tourism.

Funds are raised by the Lakes Hospitality Trade Show, which celebrates its 45th anniversary in 2020 and takes place at the J36 Auction Mart on 25-26 March.

Attracting hundreds of hospitality professionals to Cumbria every year, exhibitors at the show represent everything from décor and furniture to insurance and eco-friendly products.

Describing their event funding offer as “a fundamental principle” of the Lakes Hospitality Trade Show, the LHA says the scheme creates a direct way of ploughing money back into Cumbria’s essential tourism industry.

To further boost all year-round tourism, the LHA are looking for events taking place outside the main tourist season.

Previous funding beneficiaries include Bowness Bay Blues Festival, Kendal Torchlight Carnival, Windermere and Hawkshead Christmas Markets and the Barrow Super Soapbox Challenge.

LHA Director, James Tasker, says, “The Lakes Hospitality Trade Show is unique – not only for being the only show of its kind in the area, but as profits are redirected back into projects and events that will directly benefit local economies, the Bowness Bay Blues Festival and the Kendal Torchlight Festival being a couple of high profile examples – the latter of which sees the population of the town double during the evening, which is a welcome post-summer financial boost.

“While the trade show itself is just a two-day event, its effects are more far-reaching than for just that time-period and for individuals who work in our industry. The whole Cumbrian community feels the benefits of the trade show all year-round, thanks to large chunks of funding being raised for some of the county’s best-loved events. A highlight of the summer was in Barrow, where 14,000 people enjoyed the Super Soapbox Challenge.

“We’re really excited to see our grants scheme grow from strength to strength as we work hand-in-hand with both local businesses and communities to help Cumbria grow and prosper during what we all know are increasingly competitive and uncertain times.”

Working in partnership with Cumbria Tourism, the LHA will review each application thoroughly, so the more information applicants can provide, the better.

Events must take place between September 2020 and August 2021. They can be brand new or established events but must be taking place outside of the main tourist seasons, such as the school summer holidays.

To apply for funding, click here. Please note, the applications process closes on 31 January 2020.

The 45th annual Lakes Hospitality Trade Show takes place on March 25-26 at the J36 Rural Auction Centre at Crooklands – just a one-minute drive from the M6 motorway.

Over the last month, the Judges have been meeting to go through the entries submitted for this year’s Cumbria Tourism Awards to draw up a shortlist of finalists across the 17 categories. We are delighted to announce that the celebration, held on Wednesday 21st June 2017, will be returning to Cartmel Racecourse for a second year and catered by Campbell and Rowley’s.
The awards celebrate the huge range and diversity of Cumbria’s tourism industry and are open to a whole range of tourism related businesses including; hotels, B&Bs, holiday parks, pubs, visitor attractions, events, businesses and tourism staff, which make up the county’s successful tourism industry.

Most of the winners from the awards will go on to represent the county at the Visit England Awards for Excellence in 2018.

The shortlisted businesses will attend a prestigious black tie award ceremony and compete for the honour of being recognised as the best in Cumbria in their respective category.
Ian Stephens, Managing Director at Cumbria Tourism, says:
“2017 has been another fantastic year for entries with exceptional quality shown across all the categories, demonstrating that Cumbria’s businesses continue to offer world class levels of quality, service and experience for visitors.  It’s been a tough job for the shortlisting panel but we are now able to announce the successful finalists for the 2017 Cumbria Tourism Awards. I would like to congratulate each and every business for making it to this year’s final and for their continuing hard work and commitment to tourism in the county.”

Cumbria Tourism would like to thank their sponsors for making the event possible, they include: Armstrong Watson, Burnetts Solicitors, Chris Brammall Ltd, Christie & Co, Colliers International, Colourmedia, Cumberland Business, Enterprise Answers, H&H Reeds Printers, Lamont Pridmore, Lakeland Chauffeurs, Out of Eden, University of Cumbria, Cartmel Racecourse and Campbell and Rowley’s.

The 2017 finalists are:

Self-Catering Holiday Provider of the Year
Sponsored by Out of Eden
• The Nests at The Swan
• Pullwood Bay
• The Halston

Self-Catering Holiday Property of the Year
Sponsorship opportunity available
• Gate House
• Waitby School
• Hart Barn

Holiday Park of the Year
Sponsored by NatWest
• Waterfoot Park
• The Quiet Site
• Skelwith Fold Caravan Park
• Holgates Silverdale Holiday Park

Guest Accommodation of the Year
Sponsored by Lamont Pridmore
• Hazel Bank Country House
• Broadoaks Country House
• The Grange Country House Bed and Breakfast

B&B of the Year
Sponsored by Cumberland Business
• Hill Crest Country Guest House
• The Malabar
• Lanercost Bed and Breakfast

Taste Cumbria Award
Sponsored by Enterprise Answers
• Askham Hall
• Merewood Country House Hotel
• The Lingholm Kitchen and Walled Garden
• The Bistro, Lakes Distillery

Sustainable Tourism Award
Sponsored by University of Cumbria
• Newlands Adventure Centre
• The Quiet Site
• Ullswater Steamers
• Skelwith Fold Caravan Park

Tourism Event of the Year
Sponsored by Colourmedia
• The Winter Droving (Eden Arts)
• Go Herdwick Public Art Trail (The Lake District Calvert Trust)
• Where is Peter Rabbit Production (World of Beatrix Potter Attraction)
• Beatrix Potter 150th Anniversary Programme (The National Trust)

Large Hotel of the Year
Sponsored by Armstrong Watson
• The Daffodil Hotel & Spa
• The Trout Hotel
• Castle Green Hotel
• The Swan

Small Hotel of the Year
Sponsored by Colliers International
• Appleby Manor Hotel & Garden Spa
• Cragwood Country House Hotel
• The Ryebeck

Large Visitor Attraction of the Year
Sponsored by Burnetts Solicitors
• World of Beatrix Potter Attraction
• Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery
• Walby Farm Park
• Holker Hall & Gardens

Visitor Attraction of the Year
Sponsored by H&H Reeds Printers
• Wordsworth House & Garden
• The Beacon Museum
• Mirehouse & Gardens

Tourism Experience of the Year
Sponsorship opportunity available
• Cyclewise Whinlatter
• Go Ape Whinlatter
• Bay Cycle Way

New Tourism Business Award
Sponsorship opportunity available
• Cliffhanger Rooms
• CBA Events @ Graythwaite
• Chocolate World

Wedding Venue of the Year
Sponsorship opportunity available
• The Villa Hotel
• The Daffodil Hotel & Spa
• The Wild Boar
• The Coppermines Mountain Wedding Venue

Tourism Pub of the Year
Sponsored by Christie & Co
• The Mason’s Arms, Strawberry Bank
• Kirkstile Inn (Loweswater)
• The Flying Pig
• Three Shires Inn

The Sheila Hensman Award for Outstanding Contribution to Excellence
• Mel Ibbotson, The Leathes Head Hotel
• Paula Richardson & Frank McGurk, Sharrow Bay Country House Hotel
• Brimstone Hotel Host Team

Lake District’s newest attraction to open this Summer

In June 2017, the Ravenglass Railway Museum will officially open to the public after undergoing a major, two year, Heritage Lottery-funded redevelopment.

Built on the site of Ravenglass Station, in the West of Cumbria, the new train-shed extension will double the previous museum’s footprint and create a brand-new museum experience.

The museum owns more than 6,000 objects ranging from 15inch gauge locomotives and rolling stock through to uniforms, photographs and historic engineering, but the new development will see these artefacts come to life with interactive exhibitions allowing visitors to not only see the heritage steam locomotives, but to watch how they work and sit in the driving seat too.

David Rounce, Project and Activities Manager of the Ravenglass Railway Museum said: “We’re excited for the public to see everything we’ve been working on. The museum relies entirely on volunteers and over the last year they have worked extensively to restore the stock, much of which is over 100 years old, to make sure it is in working order and in exhibition condition.’

A star attraction will be the steam locomotive ‘Katie’ which ran at Ravenglass in 1916 and has just been restored to working condition for the first time since the 1920s.

The new professionally-designed displays will appeal to the family and enthusiast alike. Exhibits will include a collection of locomotives and rolling stock spanning the line’s opening in 1875 to the present day, including an interactive steam engine exhibit that visitors can operate themselves. There will also be models and objects telling the story of ‘La’al Ratty’s industrial past as well as the daily life of workers on the railway including their uniforms, ‘bait’ boxes and games to determine if the visitors would be suited to the job.

Thanks to Arts Council PRISM funding, awarded in January 2017, the museum will also boast the restored ‘Big Saloon’ coach which dates back to the opening of the railway to 3ft gauge in 1875, and visitors will be able to hop in and imagine taking a trip up the new line in the 1870s.

Located in the only coastal village in the Lake District, Ravenglass Station is also home to the Ravenglass and Eskdale Stream Railway, or ‘La’al Ratty’; a 7-mile tourist attraction traveling through the Eskdale Valley.

David continued: “As well as attracting tourists from ‘La’al Ratty’ to the museum, we hope it will become something of a community focal point through a programme of changing, community-led, exhibitions, and a range of curriculum-linked resources for schools are being developed to educate local children about the technology and history not only of the railway, but also life and industry in the area.”

There will also be a private archive on the upper level of the new building, for researcher and enthusiasts to book in advance and see intricate artefacts and memorabilia from the heritage railway’s history.

The museum will be open whenever the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway is running, which is every day in the summer season. An official opening day and event will be announced soon.

Ends.

Notes to editors:
1. Images: ‘Katie’ (ran the railway in 1916 and has been restored to working order ready to use and display in the museum. Katie hasn’t yet arrived at Ravenglass) Peter (the museum curator drives Synolda across Barrow Marsh towards Ravenglass May 2016)
2. For more information contact: Catherine Taylor, 01539 825019, ctaylor@cumbriatourism.org
3. The project gained £488,700 of Heritage Lottery Funding in September 2015, along with match-funding from Cumbria Community Foundation (CCF), Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG), Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway Preservation Society (RERPS) and Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway (R&ER).
4. Located in Ravenglass on the Cumbrian coast, the current museum opened in 1978in one of the former Furness Railway platform buildings housing a collection of artefacts which had been accumulated around the centenary of the Ravenglass &Eskdale Railway (‘La’al Ratty’) in 1976. The museum is run by the Ravenglass Railway Museum Trust in partnership with the R&ER and RERPS (Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway Preservation Society), and the collection consists of more than 2,000 items, ranging from the 15” gauge Bassett-Lowke loco’ ‘Synolda’ through to models, tools and remnants of one of the original 3’ gauge coaches, plus an extensive archive of photographs (c5,000), tickets, timetables and other ephemera.

Lake District named as Britain’s top walking destination

The Lake District, Cumbria, is officially the most popular destination for walking in Britain, according to a new nationwide survey just released by Ordnance Survey.

Their OS Maps service analysed more than 500,000 routes over ten years and revealed that the Lake District has topped the country’s league table with Keswick and Ambleside being the most popular locations for walkers.

And of the 20 most popular places to create a walking route across Britain, an impressive 18 of them are within the core areas of the Lake District National Park – taking in popular locations including Keswick, Ambleside, Grasmere, Helvellyn and Scafell Pike.

Managing Director for Cumbria Tourism, Ian Stephens, says, “This is the ultimate place to enjoy the great outdoors and this latest Ordnance Survey research confirms that the Lake District, Cumbria, is indeed the UK’s Adventure Capital.

“With a network of just under 2,000 miles of Rights of Way and some of the most spectacular scenery you are likely to find, it’s great to see that the Lake District remains a firm favourite. Whether you’re taking a gentle lakeside stroll with the family or scrambling up more challenging locations like Sharp Edge on Blencathra, this spectacular landscape appeals to everyone from the occasional walker to the more specialist adventurer.”

Nick Giles, Managing Director of Ordnance Survey Leisure, says: “For centuries the Lakes have held a special place in people’s hearts, and we know the area is loved by map users, because the region frequently tops our bestselling paper maps. However, when we started examining this data and looking at the route-creating habits of people, we weren’t expecting the Lake District to dominate so strongly.”

Just a few of the walks highlighted by Ordnance Survey include England’s highest mountain Scafell Pike and Langdale Fell which forms part of the popular Cumbrian Way. Other breathtaking walks include Nethermost Pike, one of the highest Wainwrights’ in the eastern fells; Allen Crags which is frequented by walkers on route to Scafell and Fairfield Horseshoe, one of the more classic Lake District walks.

For full details of the research, visit Ordnance Survey’s blog
For ideas and inspiration on walking in the Lake District, Cumbria, visit the GoLakes website.
Image attached: Scafell Pike
ENDS

Notes to Editors:
1. For more information, please contact Rebecca Walker at Cumbria Tourism Press Office on: 01539 825003 or email rwalker@cumbriatourism.org
2. Cumbria Tourism is the lead organisation for tourism in the county and is at the heart of the Cumbria Visitor Economy. It is also the largest membership organisation in Cumbria with more than 2,400 members. In 2015, more than 43 million people visited Cumbria, contributing more than £2.62 billion to the local economy and supporting around 61,000 jobs.
3. For more information about visiting the Lake District, Cumbria, visit: www.golakes.co.uk
4. To find out more about the work of Cumbria Tourism, visit www.cumbriatourism.org
5. Top 20 Ordinance Survey locations (by 1km grid square) and number of routes.
1. OSGB GridRef: NY2107 – Scafell Pike Summit – 2172
2. OSGB GridRef: SH6054 – Snowdon Summit – 2111
3. OSGB GridRef: NY2308 – Allen Crags (Near Scafell Pike) – 1918
4. OSGB GridRef: NY2208 – Great End (Near Scafell Pike) – 1908
5. OSGB GridRef: NY2806 – Langdale Fell (Cumbria Way) – 1865
6. OSGB GridRef: NY3415 – Helvellyn Summit – 1793
7. OSGB GridRef: SD8072 – Horton in Ribblesdale – 1593
8. OSGB GridRef: NY2514 – Rosthwaite – 1576
9. OSGB GridRef: NY3308 – Grasmere (North) – 1558
10. OSGB GridRef: NY1807 – Wast Water (North) – 1551
11. OSGB GridRef: NY2623 – Keswick – 1539
12. OSGB GridRef: NY2407 – Rossett Pike (Near Scafell Pike) – 1531
13. OSGB GridRef: NY3414 – Nethermost Pike (Near Helvellyn) – 1527
14. OSGB GridRef: NY3704 – Ambleside – 1520
15. OSGB GridRef: NY3816 – Glenridding – 1519
16. OSGB GridRef: NY2209 – Great Slack (Near Scafell Pike) – 1515
17. OSGB GridRef: NY2906 – Langdale Fell (Cumbria Way) – 1491
18. OSGB GridRef: NY3511 – Fairfield Summit – 1487
19. OSGB GridRef: NY3307 – Grasmere (Centre) – 1467
20. OSGB GridRef: NY2109 – Sty Head (Near Scafell Pike) – 1431

Cumbria Tourism, the county’s official destination organisation, is welcoming the imminent re-opening of the vital A591

through the central Lake District.

Previously celebrated as ‘Britain’s Best Drive’, this important route between Grasmere and Keswick has been closed since December following damage caused by Storm Desmond.

The re-opening of the A591 planned for this Friday 13 May will come as a massive relief to those tourism businesses which have suffered a downturn in trade in recent months due to a reduction in traffic and passing trade.

Cumbria Tourism with be working with more than 2,400 member businesses and a range of government bodies to help raise awareness that the A591 and the communities it serves are eager to welcome visitors back. Coach tour and group travel operators will also be targeted to drum home this important message.

Ian Stephens, Managing Director of Cumbria Tourism, says, “Recent months have been very challenging for many tourism businesses, particularly in the Grasmere, Ambleside and Keswick areas. However, the re-opening of the A591 is a major boost for tourism businesses and signals the fact that this important arterial route linking the north and south Lakes is now operating normally as we go forward into the busy summer season”.

He adds, “Although businesses will understandably still feel cautious, we are now looking forward to the summer with a sense of renewed optimism. A series of new and established local events such as the Keswick Mountain Festival are planned for the coming weeks, and the record number of high quality of entries for the upcoming Cumbria Tourism Awards also underlines the continued resilience and determination of tourism businesses to promote what they do with passion and enthusiasm.

Official bodies including Cumbria County Council, Highways England, United Utilities and the Lake District National Park have all played an important part in getting the road back into action for motorists.

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

For more information, please contact Cumbria Tourism Press Office on: 01539 825019 or email pressoffice@cumbriatourism.org

1. Cumbria Tourism is the lead organisation for tourism in the county and is at the heart of the Cumbria Visitor Economy. It is also the largest membership organisation in Cumbria with more than 2,400 members. In 2015, more than 43 million people visited Cumbria, contributing more than £2.62 billion to the local economy and supporting around 61,000 jobs.

3. For more information about visiting the Lake District, Cumbria, visit: www.golakes.co.uk

4. To find out more about the work of Cumbria Tourism, visit www.cumbriatourism.org