EXMOOR National Park Centre in Dulverton is celebrating having scooped a gong at the South West Tourism Awards.

The silver aware for 'Visitor Information Service of the Year' follows a gold accolade it received in the Bristol, Bath and Somerset Awards last year. 

Feedback from the judges highlighted the team’s 'wow' customer service, with the centre described as "a gold mine for local information and about Exmoor, with passionate and friendly staff who will go the extra mile to help and provide advice to ensure a memorable visit to the area. A must stop visit." 

Dan James, enterprise and communications manager for Exmoor National Park, said: "I am so proud of our National Park Centre teams. They meet and greet well over 150,000 visitors each year helping to inform and inspire them to explore this very special place, and to contribute positively to our communities and landscapes. 

 “As English Tourism week kicks off on (March 15), and Exmoor celebrates its 70th year as a National Park, this award highlights the commitment, passion and professionalism of our staff. Often referred to as ‘Exmoor experts’, our centre teams are keen to help everyone make the most of their Exmoor experience. 

“We are progressing exciting plans to relocate the Dulverton Centre for next year, bringing it into the historic building of Exmoor House, which is also the head office of the National Park Authority. This will provide users with a deeper insight into the National Park, and we will continue to be able to offer the 'wow' customer service the judges picked up on in the new location.” 

Anne Brice, who manages the Dulverton Centre, added: “We’re delighted with this result as we love nothing more than to chat to visitors and fill them with inspiration about visiting Exmoor. To have won Gold in the Bristol, Bath and Somerset Awards was a fantastic achievement, but to be crowned one of the best information services in the whole of the South West is a real honour.” 

The South West Tourism Excellence Awards were presented at a ceremony held in Exeter’s Great Hall on Thursday, March 14.  Other Exmoor winners included Bossington Hall (gold – bed and breakfast of the year) and Lynmouth Holiday Retreat (silver – camping and caravanning Park of the year). 

Helen Wylde-Archibald, CEO of headline sponsors, Wildanet, said: “Congratulations to all the winners from last night’s awards. With the standard of entries being so high this year, it demonstrates the incredible work that businesses throughout the South West are doing to stand-out and help to position our region as one that is truly world-class.” 

Exmoor was first designated as a National Park in 1954

The centres will all be open seven days a week, from 10am until 5pm for the main season from Saturday, March 23. Meanwhile Dulverton is open 10am – 2pm (closed Sunday and Thursday), Dunster is open at the weekend 10am - 3pm and Lynmouth is open seven days a week 10am - 5pm.  

You can find out more at www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/centres