Lake District tourist attractions take top honours at major awards ceremony

Ullswater steamers, Ullswater.

Ullswater ‘Steamers’ and Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway have both taken top honours in two categories at a major awards ceremony.

Now in its 15th year, the British Coach Tourism Awards (BCTAs) are among the tourism sector’s most sought-after accolades, featuring 19 different categories.

Ullswater ‘Steamers’ won the ‘River and Inland Cruise Operator’ category, while its sister-attraction, Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway, won the ‘Heritage Railway’ category. They are part of the Lake District Estates portfolio, a family owned organisation with heritage and preservation at the heart of the business.

Both were shortlisted thanks to each attraction’s commitment to welcoming coach groups and for creating new experiences tailored for group travel, such as the ‘Lake District Steam Tour’ in partnership with National Trust and ‘Boots, Boats & Marmalade’ as part of the English National Park Experience Collection all launching in 2019.

Mark Horton, General Manager of Ullswater ‘Steamers’ who was in attendance on the night to receive the award says, ‘There was strong competition in this category so we are delighted that the investment we’ve put into improving our piers and facilities for groups at Ullswater ‘Steamers’ has been recognised with this award. Groups are an important part of our business and our team works hard to provide excellent service on a daily basis.’

Lisa Braithwaite, Attractions Marketing Manager who works with both winners says, ‘We welcome groups at Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway and are delighted to receive this award, especially given the high quality railways in the category. Alongside our top class facilities at the station and excellent customer service, it is our partnerships with other key tourist attractions in the Lake District to create group itineraries that really add value to the visitor experience. I’d like to thank the Railway team staff and volunteers who go above and beyond to ensure visitors have a memorable experience.’

Rachel Bell, Head of Marketing & Development at Lake District Estates, comments “We are thrilled that both our heritage visitor attractions, Ullswater Steamers and the Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway are winners at the prestigious British Coach Tourism Awards. It is testimony to the continued investment in our heritage attractions by the Board, the dedication of our employees and focus to continually improve, enhance and update our product offering for today’s and tomorrow’s consumer.”