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SOUTH SOMERSET DC WINS ENGLISH TOURIST BOARD AWARD

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Against tough national competition, South Somerset DC has won the Walking Holiday Award for Marketing in Tourism in...
Against tough national competition, South Somerset DC has won the Walking Holiday Award for Marketing in Tourism in the English Tourist Board's (ETB) 1998 England for Excellence Awards, tourism's equivalent of the Oscars. They received the award for marketing their range of walking tours so effectively. Press coverage has been extensive and the Leland Trail alone is estimated to have generated£500,000 for the local economy.

TV personality and columnist, Eve Pollard, joined tourism minister, Janet Anderson and ETB chairman, David Quarmby to announce the winners at an awards ceremony on Thursday.

The Leo statuette was presented to South Somerset DC by David Spenley on behalf of one of the awards' sponsors, Holiday Cottages Group.

The silver award went to the Countryside Commission's South East National Trails, covering the North Downs Way, the South Downs Way, the Ridgeway and the Thames Path.

The annual awards, now in their tenth year, have played an important role in raising standards across the industry. They reward the very best in English tourism from hotels and tourist attractions to caravan parks and tourist information centres.

Commenting on this year's winners, ETB chief executive, Tim Bartlett said: 'It is extremely heartening to see that standards right across the industry are getting better and better with every year of the awards. The English Tourist Board spends a great deal of time and energy encouraging the tourism industry to improve quality, and this year's winners go to prove that England equals excellence.'

Each of the winners impressed the judges with their consistently high standards, their creativity, their attention to detail and their sensitivity to their customers.

The winners were selected by a panel of judges comprising travel journalists, industry figures and a consumer association representative.

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