Waterside Park to compete with cream of tourism crop

Kielder lodges

Northumbrian Water’s Leaplish Waterside Park has been named as a finalist in the prestigious VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2014.

The lodges and caravan park at Kielder Water, Northumberland is set to go head to head with top tourism destinations nationally, at a glittering awards ceremony held at Cheltenham Racecourse on Monday 12 May 2014.

The holiday destination has been recognised in the Holiday Park of the Year category, meaning it is guaranteed to receive Gold, Silver, Bronze or Highly Commended.

Leaplish was awarded Gold in its category at the North East England Tourism Awards in November last year and in addition has been selected to represent the North East at the upcoming national awards.

This award continues the roll of honour for the whole destination, Kielder Water & Forest Park, which scooped Gold in the Tourism Experience of the Year category at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2013.

The VisitEngland Awards attracted 368 national applications for the 2014 Awards – an increase of 15% on 2013.

Maxine Mayhew, Commercial Director at Northumbrian Water, said: “Leaplish has gone from strength to strength in the last few years, and to be ranked among the best holiday parks that England has to offer is a fantastic achievement.

“Everyone involved has worked really hard to come this far and we are very proud to fly the tourism flag for the North East.”

James Berresford, Chief Executive of VisitEngland, said: “I would like to congratulate all those nominated as finalists for this year’s VisitEngland Awards for Excellence.

“We receive hundreds of applications each year of an extremely high standard, so it is a tremendous achievement for Northumbrian Water’s Leaplish Waterside Park to become a finalist and to represent the top five in their category in England. I wish all the finalists the very best of luck for the Awards Ceremony in May”

The shoreline of the largest man-made lake in northern Europe is the spectacular setting for 32 luxury Scandinavian lodges and 99 touring pitches, each one boasting a panoramic view stretching over the vast lake and forest.

Since the build of the giant Kielder reservoir over thirty years ago, Northumbrian Water has led the development of Kielder Water & Forest Park as a tourist destination and in the last year, overnight stays at Leaplish Waterside Park have increased from 72% to 80%.

The lodges at Leaplish have recently been renovated to five star standard and offer a stargazing heaven, located within Northumberland International Dark Sky Park - the largest Dark Sky Park in Europe.

‘Like’ Kielder Water & Forest Park on Facebook – www.facebook.com/kielder
Follow Kielder Water & Forest Park on Twitter - @visitkielder

For more information contact Janine Scott, Communications Advisor (Kielder Water & Forest Park) on 0191 301 5538 or Janine.scott@nwl.co.uk.

Kielder Water & Forest Park, which spans 250 square miles, is home to the largest forest in England and the largest man-made lake in northern Europe. It was voted the most tranquil place in England by the Campaign to Protect Rural England. For more information go to www.visitkielder.com.

About VisitEngland

• VisitEngland is the country’s national tourist board. We work in partnership with the industry to develop the visitor experience across England, plan national tourism strategy, grow the value of tourism in England and provide advocacy for the industry and our visitors. Our work is underpinned by robust research and customer insights. You can access the latest in-depth market intelligence and statistics on www.visitengland.org/insight-statistics.

• England is a unique destination and a real powerhouse in global tourism. It represents 84 per cent of the total UK visitor economy, is worth £106 billion, and supports 2.6 million jobs.

• For corporate information see www.visitengland.org and for consumer information see www.visitengland.com. About the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2014

• The VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2014 celebrate the best of English tourism. They promote healthy industry competition and high standards, helping to ensure England′s place as a world-class destination. www.visitenglandawards.org.

• The 18 categories for the 2014 awards include: Access for All Tourism Award, Bed & Breakfast / Guest Accommodation of the Year, Business Tourism Award, Holiday Park / Holiday Village of the Year, Large Hotel of the Year, Large Visitor Attraction of the Year, Self-Catering Holiday Provider of the Year, Small Hotel of the Year, Small Visitor Attraction of the Year, Sustainable Tourism Award, Taste of England Award, Tourism Event of the Year, Tourism Experience of the Year, Tourism Pub of the Year, Visitor Information Provider of the Year.

• Included in the 18 categories are the additional Awards of Tourism Superstar, Travel Article of the Year and Outstanding Contribution to Tourism. The Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award will be announced on the night. Previous winners of this award have included The Great English Pub, Michael Eavis CBE, HM The Queen, the Harry Potter films, Sir Cameron Mackintosh, Sir Paul McCartney, Liverpool, The National Trust, the English Garden and last year the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games Makers.

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