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New book showcases responsible tourism

This is an archived press release

Tuesday 9 September 2008

09 September 2008

New book showcases responsible tourism

The story of Peak District tourism businesses who gained inspiration for new products and services from companies in rural Scandinavia is to be told in a new book.

Special Places, Special People - published by the Peak District National Park Authority - has been launched in the UK, Sweden and Norway.

It celebrates the achievements of three local authorities and more than 100 businesses in an international project known as BESST (Business and the Environment linked through Small Scale Tourism).

The project was set up to promote the environment as a great business asset enabling companies to:

  • become more committed to environmental conservation
  • improve their business performance
  • increase new business opportunities

Businesses did this by sharing ideas and working with their counterparts at Fyresdal in Norway and Hylte in Sweden.  

The well-illustrated hardback book reports on how the BESST project was set up and the impact it had on the people and places that took part.

Nineteen businesses are featured in detail - telling their story and the benefits the project has had for their businesses. The six businesses from the Peak District who feature are:

  • Chris Fleming, a Birchover-based furniture maker, who has designed and made a Scandinavian inspired log cabin.
  • Mark Dennison, a honey producer from Newtown, Longnor, who has introduced a ‘Meet the Bees’ visitor experience.
  • Sue Prince, an organic dairy farmer and artist from Ilam, who revived the Swedish tradition of bonad painting.
  • David and Felicity Brown, cabin accommodation providers on a farm, near Brassington, who installed a hot tub and fire-pit for guests to hire.
  • Fenny Bentley-based bed and breakfast business owner Susan Drabble, who gained ideas on outdoor eating and local food menus and
  • Notty Hornblower, a costume museum owner in Alstonefield, who benefited from the networking opportunities.

Alison Riley, BESST project officer for the Peak District National Park Authority and co-author of the book, said: “The BESST project has given people the opportunity to share knowledge, discuss issues they have in common, discover different approaches and be inspired by their experiences.

“In the book we show how BESST brought people together with a focus on seeing the environment as a business asset.  

“The featured stories illustrate the good effects this has had on the way people have developed their businesses using their own money as a result of their experiences.”

The BESST project ran from 2003 until March 2008 and was funded by the European Union’s Interreg Programme.

Around 150 people took part from the public and private sectors in the Peak District, Sweden and Norway. This included 60 Peak District businesses who:

  • attended local business network meetings
  • offered new facilities or attractions for tourists linked to a leaflet showing a series of heritage walks for visitors to the Peak District  
  • developed the 28-mile Trails Triangle cycle route from Parsley Hay, near Hartington, to Carsington Water and back again or
  • took part in international business exchanges.

The book will share good practice with other public sector organisations planning to run an international partnership project but is also of interest to people from the communities involved.

It can be downloaded for free from the BESST website at www.besst.org in the Managing BESST section. Copies can also be borrowed from Peak District libraries and viewed in tourist information centres.

Alternatively, the book can be bought for £14.99 from the Peak District National Park Authority by contacting Alison Riley or Tracy Broomhead on 01629 816338.

This is an archived press release

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