Peak District businesses are the cream of the crop when it comes to eco-tourism – for two of the area’s accommodation providers have scooped top awards for their commitment to the environment in a prestigious national competition.

Beechenhill Farm at Ilam struck gold and near neighbours Hoe Grange Holidays of Brassington scored silver in the Sustainable Tourism Award category at the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2013 at The Point, Lancashire County Cricket Club, Manchester this week (Monday May 20).

Hoe Grange Holidays was also highly commended in the Access for All Tourism Award category.

“Congratulations to both businesses for being recognised and rewarded at national level for their high standard of service to visitors who come to the Peak District from all over the world,” said David James, Chief Executive of Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, the area’s official tourist board.

“Achieving such high-profile success in the national tourist board’s sought-after annual awards is an example to all other businesses involved in tourism and sets the benchmark for them to aspire to in the future.”

VisitEngland’s Chief Executive, James Berresford, added: “The VisitEngland Awards for Excellence represent the highest accolade in English tourism, and this year’s winners have raised the bar higher than ever before.“

The awards champion the very best in quality and customer service, and continue to help raise standards across the industry, establishing England’s place as a world-class destination and a brilliant place to visit.

“The competition was fierce, so all our finalists are to be warmly congratulated for their success – particularly our Gold Award winners, whose passion and commitment to excellence is exemplary.”

Sue Prince of Beechenhill Farm said: “We are absolutely delighted with our gold award. It is exactly what the Peak District is all about – helping our lovely guests have the best time in a way that enhances our stunning environment.”

David Brown of Hoe Grange Holidays – finalists and winners of Gold or Silver in the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence for three consecutive years – added: “We feel extremely proud to have achieved such an honour, especially being a small family firm up against so many multimillion pound businesses. Both access and sustainability are issues close to our heart, and form the foundations of our business. “

Awards were presented in 17 categories, ranging from Best Tourism Experience/Event of the Year and Tourism Pub of the Year to Business Tourism and Tourism Superstar. Winners of the Outstanding Contribution to Tourism were The Olympic Games makers – recognising the nine million hours they spent welcoming and helping visitors at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.


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