THE Cairngorms National Park has been named as a finalist in a prestigious European award for sustainable tourism destinations.
One of the Priorities for Action in the Cairngorms National Park Plan, which sets out the long-term future of the Park, is making tourism and business more sustainable. The work that is going on in that field has been recognised after the Park was named as one of the three finalists in the European Environment Agency’s first ever Royal Destination Award for Sustainable Tourism. It rewards excellent performance and best practice in the field.
The Cairngorms National Park is the only UK finalist.
Judges were impressed with how communities, businesses and other organisations in the Park are working together to create a sustainable Park for all, with strong quality and environment standards.
Heather Galbraith, Sustainable Tourism Officer at the Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA), one of the key partners working in the Park, said: “It is an honour to be nominated as a finalist. Establishing the Park as a sustainable tourism destination is a key priority for everyone involved in tourism in the area.
“This recognises the work being done in the Park by businesses, organisations and communities to make it a leading sustainable tourism destination.”
David Green, the CNPA Convener, said: “Part of the future for the Cairngorms National Park is creating a sustainable tourism sector, which has quality at its heart in terms of the business, service, experience and environment. It will also benefit the employment sector, as it will create long-term jobs and also contribute towards achieving the national objective of increasing tourism revenue by 50 per cent by 2015.
“It is encouraging that our efforts are being recognised and gives us added incentive to push forward with our work. To be named as one of the finalists is a credit to everyone working in the Park to create a sustainable destination.”
The awards ceremony is taking place at the Fairmont Hotel in St Andrews on Friday 13th April.
The other finalists are Pielach Valley in Austria and Fiskars Village in Finland. All three will give a presentation on the sustainable tourism work being carried out in their area.
The Cairngorms National Park talk will focus on how communities, businesses and organisations are working together to deliver:
- A consistent brand with strong environmental credentials;
- A flexible workforce with real opportunities for career development particularly for young people in the area and
- A Park for All with access to the outdoors for everyone, not just the fit and the few.
The winner will be announced following the presentations.
Amongst the guests speakers at the event will be representatives from the European Commission and the World Tourism Organisation.