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Friday, 19 December 2014

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Cumbrian businesses win prizes at VisitEngland Awards for Excellence

A fell-top tourist attraction inspired by tragic Cumbrian entrepreneur Mark Weir has landed a prestigious national tourism prize.

The Via Ferrata Experience, at Honister Slate Mine, scooped a silver award in the Tourism Experience category of the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence 2012.

The attraction, high on the crags of the spectacular Fleetwith Pike in the Borrowdale Valley, sees thrillseekers secured by harnesses as they edge along an historic cliff-edge miners’ route, using metal ladders, hand rungs and bridges, before reaching a stunning summit viewpoint over Buttermere and Crummock.

It was the idea of former Honister owner Mark Weir, who died in a helicopter crash in March last year.

Eight Cumbrian tourism businesses won prizes at last night’s awards in Leicester.

The George and Dragon, at Clifton, Penrith, won a silver in the Taste of England Award category; Muncaster Castle won silver in the Large Visitor Attraction of the Year category; and Ullswater Steamers also struck silver, in the Outstanding Customer Service Award.

Cockermouth’s Trout Hotel bounced back from the devastation of the 2009 floods to win bronze in the in the Large Hotel of the Year and The Beacon, in Whitehaven, was highly commended in the Access for All Tourism Award.

Ian Stephens, managing director of Cumbria Tourism, said: “All eight businesses can rightfully say they are among the best in the country.

“We are proud of their achievements, dedication and commitment to providing first class experiences and services for visitors.”

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