We are delighted to have become Accessibility Champions, having recently completed Access for All UK training, through a programme delivered by Visit Peak District and Derbyshire and Accessible UK. We are the first company in the National Forest to have successfully completed the training.
The training consisted of a series of interactive webinars on accessible tourism and has been designed to help tourism and hospitality businesses learn more about welcoming visitors with special requirements. Subjects covered included hearing and sight loss, autism and dementia, mobility impairment and accommodation needs.
Led by Accessible UK founder, Gillian Scotford, the training provided participating businesses with practical tips on ways to help welcome visitors with additional access needs.
Jo Dilley, Managing Director of Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, says: "We'd like to extend a huge congratulations to our new Accessibility Champions who are excellent ambassadors for accessible tourism and beacons of inspiration for many other local businesses to follow. “One in five of the UK population is disabled and the Accessibility Champions scheme offers a unique opportunity for businesses to gain a share of the £15.3 billion accessible tourism market, obtain loyal customers and, above all else, provide memorable experiences for visitors with additional access needs."
Sue Jerham, Managing Director of National Forest EBikes said, “The Accessibility Champion training helped highlight some of the issues faced and ways that we can make our holidays in the National Forest accessible to more guests. We're a small business and already tailor routes and accommodation to suit specific requirements. The National Forest is less known than many tourism destinations and attractions are often much quieter. This could really suit guests that prefer to explore without too many distractions and too much hustle and bustle. We have been speaking to a local council about sensory walks and will now be working with local businesses to develop specific ideas. We hope to launch our first accessible holiday in 2023."
About National Forest EBike Holidays
National Forest EBike Holidays offers luxury, self-guided EBike and walking holidays in and around the National Forest region of the UK. Guests can start their holiday any day of the week, all year. The holidays are designed to encourage slow travel. We keep mileage low, making our EBike and walking holidays perfect for gentle adventurers and leaving plenty of time to connect with nature and explore the many sights and experiences along the way. We love signposting some of the fabulous local woodland experiences, including bee keeping, Forest Bathing and woodland crafts. We move guests' luggage between hotels, leaving them free to explore the region at their own pace and in their own private group. Our guests can expect fabulous accommodation each night. We select the best possible small luxury B&Bs, delightful country inns and small boutique hotels. Often our accommodation providers have their own green tourism accreditations and awards. All have a love of locally-sourced, seasonal food – it will be home-grown, reared or baked in many cases. Unlike many cycling and walking holidays, our routes are circular to limit the need for additional transportation. In most instances, there is always a local pub or restaurant for guests to enjoy a delightful evening meal, without needing to take a taxi. As a small family company, we specialise in offering guests a very personal service, with holidays tailored to suit guest's specific needs or interests.
The National Forest region
Straddling Leicestershire, Derbyshire and Staffordshire, The National Forest is one of England's most exciting and ambitious regeneration projects. The area was once full of of coal mines, opencast and clay pits. The last 30 years has seen 200 square miles transformed from black to green, completely changing the landscape and lives of local people. Miners have become forest guardians and forest schools are common place for children. Some of the UK's most productive mines are now filled with trees and wildlife. The 9 millionth tree was planted in 2021 and the region has gone from less than 6% to over 20% tree coverage.