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Queen's Award for Cumbria holiday park is a national first

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A holiday park near Ullswater has become the first park in Britain to win the Queen's Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development.

The Quiet Site in Watermillock near Penrith will be presented with the award during a visit from a royal representative in the near future.

Park owners, Daniel and his wife Anne, will also attend a royal reception at Buckingham Palace, and are permitted to fly the Queen's Award flag at the Quiet Site for the next five years.

The couple, who acquired the park 30 years ago as a simple camping field, said they were "proud beyond belief" to win the highest official UK award for British businesses.

"From the outset, we have always made sustainable tourism our main business priority, and it's very humbling to have our efforts acknowledged in this way," said Mr Holder.

"We are surrounded by some of the world's most amazing scenery, and it's impossible not to feel a sense of responsibility for trying to preserve such a beautiful but fragile landscape.

"Tourism is vital to our regional economy and supports thousands of jobs, and it is perfectly sustainable if we all play a part in minimising our impact on the environment."

Last year, the park opened a "zero waste" food shop which specialises in Cumbrian produce free from unnecessary packaging, and with the fewest possible food miles under its belt.

The shop was highlighted in the official Queen's Award citation, along with a raft of other measures put in place to provide "green holidays" for the park's UK and overseas visitors.

The Quiet Site has invested heavily in sustainable technologies including solar panels and biomass heating, as well as banning single-use plastics, and implementing a "buy local" policy.

Amongst the popular accommodation options at the park, said the citation, are 15 underground "Hobbit Holes" which are highly insulated and extremely energy efficient.

It concluded that The Quiet Site was wholly deserving of the prestigious royal award "because it is providing sustainability leadership in its industry".

As well as its Hobbit Holes, the park offers camping pods, glamping cabins, holiday cottages, and tent and touring pitches with commanding views of Ullswater.

Popular too at The Quiet Site is a cosy bar which was converted from a barn built in 1648.

The Queen's Award for Enterprise was established in 1965 to highlight Britain's top performing companies, and the category for sustainable development was introduced in 1992.

The Quiet Site is now the first among Britain's 3,000-plus holiday parks to have met the strict criteria for consistently demonstrating sustainability over a period of years.

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