PURE WIGHT BRAND SHINES A LIGHT ON THE ISLAND’S OUTDOOR ADVENTURES AND CHALLENGE EVENTS

This May, the Isle of Wight will become the UK’s outdoor playground as walkers, cyclists and runners are put through their paces at a range of “Pure Wight”, adrenalin-fuelled events including The Isle of Wight Challenge (2/3 May), The Isle of Wight Randonee (3 May), Walk the Wight (10 May) – and the Pearl Izumi Tour Series cycle race (14th May).

 

The Island’s landscape is incredibly diverse.   It ranges from steep chalk downs and ancient woodland to lush green fields and dramatic coastline offering many recreation facilities for walking, cycling, horse riding, golfing, sailing, surfing and windsurfing.    Cycling and walking are particularly popular due to the miles of cycle routes along former railway lines and well-maintained footpaths.

 

But the Island also offers a range of adrenaline-fuelled experiences like stand-up paddle-boarding, kite-surfing and rock climbing which provide a fantastic chance to see parts of the coastline and landscape that are not accessible by more pedestrian means.

 

This May is a particularly massive month for outdoor events on the Island and VIOW is using the new Pure Wight brand – and mainstream events like the Pearl Izumi Tour Series – to highlight the Island’s suitability as an exciting, outdoor adventure holiday destination.

 

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “The outdoor activity sector accounts for 20% of the total visitors in the Isle of Wight , and with the potential to stay longer, and get involved in more activities, these travellers are a priority audience for Visit Isle of Wight.

 

“The Pure Wight brand will help us to appeal to extreme sport devotees and those looking for an action-packed holiday experience”.

 

For more information about what there is to see and do on the Isle of Wight, go to www.visitisleofwight.co.uk

 

ENDS

 

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

 

Image attached of people enjoying Stand-up paddleboarding at The Needles, Isle of Wight.

 

Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org

 

 

ISLE OF WIGHT NAMED SECOND BEST RATED ISLAND IN THE UK & CHANNEL ISLES IN TRIPADVISOR TRAVELLERS’ CHOICE AWARDS

TripAdvisor reveals winners of 2015 Travellers’ Choice Islands based on reviews and opinions of millions of travellers

LONDON, UK, 21 April, 2015 – Isle of Wight has today been named the second best rated island in the UK and Channel Isles in the 2015 Travellers’ Choice™ awards for Islands, announced by TripAdvisor®, the world’s largest travel site*.

The annual awards are based on the millions of valuable reviews and opinions from TripAdvisor travellers across the globe. Winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of reviews and ratings for hotels, restaurants and attractions on islands worldwide, gathered over a 12 month period.

For those looking to travel to the Isle of Wight, the average hotel price per night available to book on TripAdvisor is £86i, though there are considerable price differences between value and luxury hotel options on the island.

The Roseberry Hotel, rated 4.5 bubbles out of 5 by TripAdvisor travellers, is available at an average of £76ii per night this summer, while those looking to splash out a little could consider Hillside Hotel, which is available to book on TripAdvisor at an average of £158 a night over the same period.

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight said, “As the UK’s holiday island, we are delighted that the Isle of Wight has been recognised in the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards for Islands.”

“Located just 10-minutes from mainland UK with a warmer than average climate, the Island is the perfect escape for those seeking beautiful scenery combined with fun-filled activities and adventure.”

Caribbean home to world’s best rated island – but Thailand offers most affordable getaway

This year, islands as far afield as Hawaii, Mauritius and Bora Bora were named among the world top ten, with the number one ranking going to Turks and Caicos’ Providenciales, more commonly known as ‘Provo’, where the average hotel room rate bookable on TripAdvisor is £343 a night.

Among the world’s top ten best rated islands, Ko Tao in Thailand offers the cheapest hotel value with average room rates on TripAdvisor at less than £60 a night.

“With so many stunning islands in the UK, it really is a fantastic achievement for the Isle of Wight to be named among the best rated by those who matter most – the people who visit,” commented James Kay, TripAdvisor spokesperson, “There is nothing like a picture of a white sandy beach to get us all dreaming of an island getaway, but judging by the average hotel rates on TripAdvisor for this year’s award winning islands, that dream trip may be more affordable than you think. To help travellers book their trips to these remarkable destinations, TripAdvisor has surfaced amazing island hotels to accommodate a range of travel budgets.”

In the Europe award category, Santorini claimed the top prize followed by Madeira in second place, while Jersey claimed its highest ever ranking in sixth place.

Scotland biggest winner in UK and Channel Islands

In the UK and Channel Islands category, Scotland scooped the most awards, with Isle of Arran, Isle of Skye, Mainland Orkney and Lewis and Harris taking fourth, fifth, sixth and eighth place respectively.

2015 Travellers’ Choice Islands winners and average room rates:

 

Europe Average nightly hotel rate on TripAdvisor
  1. Santorini, Greece
£139
  1. Madeira, Portugal
£59
  1. Crete, Greece
£51
  1. Zakynthos, Greece
£87
  1. Fuerteventura, Canary Islands, Spain
£83
  1. Jersey, Channel Islands
£111
  1. Majorca, Balearic Islands, Spain
£153
  1. Island of Capri, Italy
£189
  1. Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain
£72
  1. Corsica, France
£81

 

UK & Channel Isles Average nightly hotel rate on TripAdvisor
  1. Jersey, Channel Isles
£111
  1. Isle of Wight
£86
  1. St Mary’s, Isles of Scilly
£182
  1. Isle of Arran, Scotland
£135
  1. Isle of Skye, Scotland
£139
  1. Mainland Orkney Island, Scotland
£119
  1. Anglesey, Wales
£83
  1. Lewis and Harris, Scotland
£126
  1. Isle of Man
£88
  1. Guernsey, Channel Isles
£118

 

2015 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Islands – world winners:

 

For travellers planning an escape to a Travellers’ Choice Island in the world winners list, TripAdvisor has identified average hotel rates and highly-rated mid-range hotels bookable on TripAdvisor. Below are also “don’t miss attractions” for travellers to check out on their trip.

 

  1. Providenciales, Turks and Caicos, Caribbean – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £343[i]For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £264[ii] per night, consider Grace Bay Suites, with a 4 out of 5 average bubble rating and 173 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Grace Bay and Sun & Fun Sea Sports.
  2. Maui, Hawaii, United States – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £230For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £234 per night, consider Aston Mahana at Kaanapali, with a 4.5 out of 5 bubble rating and 1,470 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Ka’anapali Beach and Wai’anapanapa State Park.
  3. Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £136For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £125 per night, consider Cocolobo, with a 5 out of 5 average bubble rating and 420 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to West Bay Beach and Blue Harbor Tropical Arboretum.
  4. Santorini, Greece – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £138For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £168 per night, consider Enigma Apartments and Suites, with a 5 out of 5 average bubble rating and 665 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Skaros Rock and Sunset in Oia.
  5. Ko Tao, Thailand – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £58For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £59 per night, consider Chintakiri Resort, with a 4.5 out of 5 average bubble rating on TripAdvisor and 301 reviews. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Sai Nuan Beach and Apnea Total.
  6. Madeira, Portugal – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £59For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £64 per night, consider Hotel Albergaria Dias, with a 5 out of 5 average bubble rating and 352 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Monte Cable Car and Quinta do Riacho.
  7. Bali, Indonesia – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £106For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £163 per night, consider Komaneka at Rasa Sayang, with a 5 out of 5 average bubble rating and 599 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Bali Jet Set Dive and Marine Sports and Warung Enak Homestay.

 

  1. Mauritius – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £146For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £112 per night, consider Merville Beach Hotel, with a 4.5 out of 5 average bubble rating and 1,283 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Trou d’Argent Beach and Les 7 Cascades.
  2. Bora Bora, French Polynesia – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £286For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £173 per night, consider Bora Bora Eden Beach Hotel, with a 4 out of 5 average bubble rating and 153 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Mount Otemanu and Shark Boy Bora Bora.
  3. Fernando de Noronha, Brazil – average nightly hotel rate for 2015: £259For a great highly rated mid-range hotel option, bookable on TripAdvisor at an average of £156 per night, consider Dolphin Hotel, with a 4.5 out of 5 average bubble rating and 142 reviews on TripAdvisor. Once on the island, don’t miss out on a visit to Baia do Sancho and Baia do Sueste.

 

 

For the complete list of winners from the 2015 Travellers’ Choice Islands, as well as reviews and candid traveller photos, go to http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/TravellersChoice-Islands.

 

To see the best hotels for luxury, bargain, romance and more, as honoured in the 2015 Travellers’ Choice awards for Hotels announced in January, go to: www.tripadvisor.co.uk/TravellersChoice-Hotels.

 

 

About TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor® is the world’s largest travel site*, enabling travellers to plan and book the perfect trip. TripAdvisor offers advice from travellers and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features with seamless links to booking tools that check hundreds of websites to find great hotel prices. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, reaching 315 million unique monthly visitors**, and more than 200 million reviews and opinions covering more than 4.5 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions. The sites operate in 45 countries worldwide. TripAdvisor also includes TripAdvisor for Business, a dedicated division that provides the tourism industry access to millions of monthly TripAdvisor visitors.

TripAdvisor, Inc. (NASDAQ: TRIP) manages and operates websites under 24 other travel media brands: www.airfarewatchdog.com,www.bookingbuddy.com,www.cruisecritic.com,www.everytrail.com, www.familyvacationcritic.com,www.flipkey.com,www.thefork.com(including www.lafourchette.com, www.eltenedor.com,www.iens.nl and www.besttables.com), www.gateguru.com,www.holidaylettings.co.uk, www.holidaywatchdog.com,www.independenttraveler.com,www.jetsetter.com,www.niumba.comwww.onetime.com,www.oyster.com,www.seatguru.com,www.smartertravel.com, www.tingo.comwww.travelpod.com,www.tripbod.com,www.vacationhomerentals.com,www.viator.com, www.virtualtourist.com, and www.kuxun.cn.

*Source: comScore Media Metrix for TripAdvisor Sites, worldwide, December 2014

 

**Source: Google Analytics, average monthly unique users, Q3 2014

 

 

[i]Average hotel rates are based on TripAdvisor data for 1 January – 31 December, 2015, for all hotels on each island. Rates are aggregated from booking partners, including online travel agencies and direct hotel suppliers. All prices converted to British sterling from US dollar on 14 April 2015.

 

[ii]Average nightly hotel rates for are based on TripAdvisor data for 1 January – 31 December, 2015, for individual mid-range hotels. Rates are aggregated from booking partners, including online travel agencies and direct hotel suppliers. All prices converted to British sterling from US dollar on 14 April 2015.

TOP CYCLE RACE RIDES INTO RYDE

With just under four weeks to go until Britain’s fastest cycling teams race into action on the Isle of Wight, the countdown to the Pearl Izumi Tour Series has begun.

On Thursday, 14th May, the Island will host the first round of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series – a leading televised cycle race – with the UK’s leading cyclists competing in a fast-paced road race around a 1.2km street circuit in Ryde.

The town centre will be transformed into a high-speed, professional circuit where top-class cyclists will battle it out at speeds of around 30mph in front of packed crowds to gain pole-position on the coveted winners’ podium.

It is expected to attract a host of top names with the brand new Team WIGGINS, formed by 2012 Tour de France winner and Olympic champion Sir Bradley Wiggins, the ONE Pro Cycling team of England cricketer Matt Prior and Olympic Champion Ed Clancy all billed to compete.

It was in January that Visit Isle of Wight (VIOW), the Isle of Wight Council and Island Roads made the announcement that after months of negotiation, they had been successful in securing this prestigious sporting event – one of the UK’s leading televised cycle races – to the Island.

Visit Isle of Wight is using this opportunity to promote Bicycle Island as “the home of cycle holidays”, and encourage visitors to travel around the Island more sustainably on bikes.

Races and activities will be held throughout the day from 12.30pm for local school children aged 10 and 11, followed by an afternoon of support races with keen local cyclists, ahead of the professionals taking to the circuit from 3pm for the Tour Series Team Time Trial.

The exciting Tour Series Race starts at 7.30pm giving spectators a close-up view of the athletes as they race from the start/finish line on The Esplanade, then a challenging climb up Union Street before going along Cross and Melville Streets to the big downhill on Dover Street that heads back down to The Esplanade.

The Team Race, open to nine teams comprising of four cyclists, is a highly popular and competitive event. Registered entrants have the chance to ‘test their mettle’ around the circuit and against the clock. The team with the fastest lap times will be presented with winners’ medals on the professional podium.

Taking place at 10 venues around the UK in May and June, the star-studded sporting event will use a circular route around the town on Thursday, 14th May.   Hosting the first leg of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series, the Isle of Wight is expecting crowds of up to 10,000 to come out and enjoy the race.

A series of Visit Isle of Wight advertisements promoting the race and the Island’s cycle holiday offer are live right now in influential sporting magazines, websites and on social media.

“David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight, said: “We’re delighted to have the first leg of this elite race series, which should provide a boost to the local economy with lots of visitors coming to watch the race.

“Additionally, the TV exposure on ITV4 will help us to showcase Bicycle Island across the UK as a premium cycle holiday destination.”

Councillor Shirley Smart, Isle of Wight Council Executive member for economy and tourism, said: “The Pearl Izumi Tour series is a wonderful opportunity for the Isle of Wight to showcase what we have to offer.

“The streets of Ryde, with the backdrop of stunning views of the Solent, will make for a superb location.

“When the 2011 NatWest Island Games were held on the Isle of Wight, residents gave the athletes a huge welcome in Ryde and I am sure we will see similar celebrations again.”

Paul Herbert, Island Roads Service Director said: “This is an important event for the Island not just on the day itself but for the potential it has to profile the Isle of Wight as a cycling destination.  We are working hard to ensure that the roads that form the race circuit in Ryde are in the best condition for the cyclists taking part and, at the same time, that we continue our work to improve roads across the Island for cyclists and indeed all road users for many years to come.”

Launched in 2009, 2015’s Pearl Izumi Tour Series – put together by the same team behind the organisation and promotion of the Tour of Britain – takes place in 10 town and city centres and is the only British domestic cycle race to be televised.

For more information about the Isle of Wight Pearl Izumi Tour Series, go to www.visitisleofwight.co.uk

ENDS

Press contact:   Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

Notes to Editors

Images attached: (1) VIOW ad for use in cycling magazines (2) Riders in Action at 2014 Tour Series Round in Barrow – Copyright – Pearl Izumi Tour Series.

The link to the media accreditation process can be found at www.thetour.co.uk/press or reached directly via http://accreditation.thetour.co.uk    Please note that applications for Pearl Izumi Tour Series rounds should be made no later than 72-hours prior to the round which you wish to attend.

Round One                 Thursday 14 May        Ryde, Isle of Wight (including Team Time Trial)

Round Two                 Tuesday 19 May         Redditch

Round Three               Friday 22 May             Aberystwyth (including Hill Climb)

Round Four                 Tuesday 26 May         Motherwell

Round Five                 Thursday 28 May        Durham

Round Six                   Friday 29 May             Barrow

Round Seven              Tuesday 2 June          Croydon

Round Eight                Thursday 4 June         Canary Wharf

Round Nine                 Tuesday 9 June          Peterborough

Round Ten                  Thursday 11 June       Bath

 

The nine teams for the 2015 Pearl Izumi Tour Series will be JLT Condor presented by Mavic; Madison Genesis,  NFTO Pro Cycling, ONE Pro Cycling, Pedal Heaven RT, SportGrub Kuota; Team Raleigh – GAC; Team WIGGINS; and Velosure Starley Primal.  Joining them will be one guest team per round.

About The Pearl Izumi Tour Series

2015 will be the seventh season of the Pearl Izumi Tour Series, a unique team based, televised city centre cycling series organised by SweetSpot Group Ltd, the company behind the organisation and promotion of The Tour of Britain and The Women’s Tour.  The Pearl Izumi Tour Series brings together the very best in British professional teams and riders, competing on town and city-centre circuits in front of packed crowds as a part of a full day of cycling activities.

SweetSpot is a sports marketing and events company specialising in the creation and execution of high quality, commercially successful, annual sporting events.

You can follow The Pearl Izumi Tour Series on Twitter @TourSeries #tourseries or Facebook or via the official website at www.tourseries.co.uk

For further press information, logos and images, or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Peter Hodges              PR Manager               peterh@thetour.co.uk             01932 831 485

Grace Metcalf             PR Manager               grace@thetour.co.uk              01932 831 485

 

The Pearl Izumi Tour Series is being funded by VIOW and LSTF – the project which aims to improve and promote the Island’s sustainable transport network – with support from Island Roads, Ryde Town Council, Ryde Business Association, Southern Vectis and ferry operators Wightlink and Red Funnel.   For more information, go to  http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/events/the-pearl-izumi-tour-series-p1137591

Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org

To find out more about Bicycle Island, go to www.visitisleofwight.co.uk

 

THE ISLE OF WIGHT FESTIVAL OF THE SEA SAILS INTO PORT

The Isle of Wight Festival of the Sea – promoted by Visit Isle of Wight (VIOW) – returns for a third year, from  Monday 22nd June to Sunday 5th July 2015, with dozens of themed events and activities for local people and visitors to enjoy.

 

The popular annual celebration of the Island’s nautical heritage will be highlighted by “anchor” events bringing visitors a memorable fourteen filled with shanty bands, arts & crafts exhibitions, lighthouse tours, sea safaris and, of course, delicious seafood. 

 

Since it began in 2013, the Festival of the Sea has welcomed thousands of visitors to the Island.  Last year, VIOW joined forces with J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race organisers to create an even bigger spectator event. 

 

This year’s race which regularly attracts over 1,700 boats and around 16,000 sailors – making it one of the largest yacht races in the world – takes place on Saturday 27th June.

 

A fantastic new event for 2015, “Shipwreck Isle”, in Ryde on Sunday, 28th June, will present a swashbuckling mix of piratical fun and entertainment.   

 

Shipwreck Isle will take place at Appley Beach with a full programme of activities centred on and around the beach.   Seafront events will include stunt action sword-fighting, historical re-enactments, canon and firearm demonstrations – and the “Pirates of the Caribbean Europe Group” who will be out in force with their Caribbean Village on the beach.

 

An event of mammoth proportions, “Dinosaurs by the Sea” will also be dropping anchor on Saturday 4th July when visitors and locals alike will be invited to be part of a record-breaking attempt in forming the world’s largest human Tyrannosaurus Rex at Appley Beach.

 

Meanwhile, Small Hope Beach in Shanklin will be pioneering an alternative Festival of the Sea finale with the Island’s only ‘beach festival’ with a twist. The “All at Sea” beach festival on Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th July will have a Birdman contest, Cardboard Boat race, with more activities to be confirmed shortly.

 

With a packed timetable of events planned this June and July, VIOW is hoping that Festival of the Sea 2015 will encourage people to plan a trip and experience the Island’s seafaring history and heritage for themselves.

 

They hope to broaden the festival’s spread even further than last year and are inviting organisations, towns and villages to come up with their own nautically-inspired events, which will be promoted by VIOW for free.

 

David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight said, “The Festival of the Sea has the potential to become an integral part of the Island’s summertime fun and after last year’s tremendous success, we want to offer a rich mix of quality events to attract even more people to attend. We hope to have workshops, performances, open days, sport events, exhibitions, talks, demonstrations, beach events, food events and more. We’d also love to see towns and shops decorated in a nautical theme.”

 

The Festival of the Sea will be marketed through all media channels and anyone interested in hosting an event or providing a promotional offer to grow their business or promote their village or town, should visit www.visitwight.org while the festival programme is being developed.

 

A full schedule of events will be listed on www.visitisleofwight.co.uk

 

ENDS

 

Press contact:   Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

 

Notes for Editors:

 

Images attached:

 

1) “Hauling the pots” – Ocean Blue, will once again be running Sea Safaris from Ventnor Haven http://www.oceanbluequay.co.uk/sea_charters/

2)   The “Pirates of the Caribbean Europe Group”, who will be at Shipwreck Isle, which forms parts of the Festival of the Sea, on Sunday, 28th June.

 

Visit Isle of Wight

Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org

 

Shipwreck Isle (28th June) and Dinosaurs by the Sea (4th July)

 

These events are organised by Roger Crouch, tel. 07739 373567, e-mail rogercrouch07@btinternet.com

 

All at Sea (4/5th July)

 

This event is organised by John Hawkins, Beach Events, tel. 07973 669 176, e-mail john@beach-events.co.uk, www.beach-events.co.uk

 

The J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Yacht Race

 

Held on the longest day this year, Saturday 21st June, the J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race, organised by the Island Sailing Club, regularly attracts over 1,700 boats and around 16,000 sailors, making it the largest yacht race of its kind in the world and the fourth largest participation sporting event in the UK.

 

Competitors come from all over Great Britain, from other parts of Europe and from as far away as Australia and the USA to race the 50 nautical mile course around the Isle of Wight. Starting on the famous Royal Yacht Squadron ‘line’ in Cowes, the massive fleet, often flying brightly coloured spinnakers, races westabout to The Needles, around St Catherine’s Point and Bembridge Ledge buoy, and back into the Solent to the finish line at Cowes.

 

For those not competing, the Island and the South coast have many great vantage points to watch the Race unfold, such as the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth, Hurst Castle, and The Needles.

(separate vantage point list/map http://www.roundtheisland.org.uk/web/code/php/main_c.php?map=rir14&ui=rir4&style=std&override=&section=race&page=course )   http://www.roundtheisland.org.uk

Media enquiries: Peta Stuart-Hunt, ISC Race Press Officer | 07711 477707

 

 

TOURISM CHIEFS BACK £350,000 INVESTMENT AT THE NEEDLES

Tourism chiefs on the Isle of Wight have unveiled a new Carousel and Taste of the Wight retail outlet at The Needles Landmark Attraction.

It’s part of a £350,000 investment by the site’s owners Heritage Great Britain plc and is being hailed as a significant boost to the Island’s tourism offer.

Improvements at the iconic landmark, which has more than half a million visitors every year, also include a refurbished Marconi monument, a new 4D film and improved signage.

Councillor Shirley Smart, Executive Member Economy and Tourism, Isle of Wight Council, said:

“We welcome this investment as a sign of confidence by the site’s owners as we look forward to welcoming a record number of visitors to the Island.

“This certainly adds to the offer and there is no doubt that the Isle of Wight is a must visit destination for tourists.”

David Thornton, Chief Executive, Visit Isle of Wight, said:

“The Needles is the most popular landmark for visitors to the Island but with many other high quality attractions, including award-winning beaches and a first class shopping offer, there really is something for everyone to enjoy.”

Marino Zanti, General Manager, The Needles Landmark Attraction, said:

“It’s been an encouraging start to the new season with some positive feedback already about all of the improvements at The Needles Landmark Attraction.

“We’re delighted to unveil the new Carousel which we hope will bring back memories of the traditional fairground and people will enjoy for many, many years to come.”

For more information about The Needles Landmark Attraction visit www.theneedles.co.uk, follow on Twitter @VisitTheNeedles or facebook.com/visittheneedles

Ends

For further information please contact Richard Clein on 0151 362 0023 or 07803 729133.

Richard Clein MCIPR MPRCA Director

Boxed Off Communications Ltd

Box Studios, 17 Boundary Street,

Liverpool, L5 9UB

0151 362 0023 | 07803 729133

www.boxedoffcomms.co.uk

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Pineapples and Peacocks: Queen Victoria’s Indian room re-opens at Osborne

8th April 2015: Queen Victoria’s Durbar room at Osborne re-opens this week after conservation work to return this grand space to its original use as the banqueting hall of her Isle of Wight home.

Inspired by photographs from the1890s, English Heritage curators have replaced the display cases which dominated the middle of the room with a formal dining table and balloon backed dining chairs, to the specifications of the Victorian originals. The table is set for dinner and adorned with a magnificent centrepiece consisting of lush greenery, pineapples and flowers.  New interpretation will help visitors step into the grandeur of court life and understand Queen Victoria’s relationship with the Empire in her home’s Indian wing.

The room’s elaborate plaster ceiling, designed by Lockwood Kipling, father of Rudyard and inspired by 16th Century North Indian architecture, has been cleaned and conserved as has the stunning carpet. To complete the opulent picture, an intricately crafted peacock, originally taking 500 hours to produce, stands proud over the chimneypiece.

Visitors will also be able to admire a collection of decorative objects from the sub-continent, predominantly gifts, commemorating Queen Victoria’s golden and diamond jubilees of 1887 and 1897.  New displays will give kids the chance to get hands-on.

Osborne; the house, gardens, Swiss Cottage and beach is now open seven days a week until November 2015.  Admission prices are £14.30 adult/£8.60 child/£12.90 concession/ £37.20 family (2 adults and 3 children). For more information visit www.english-heritage.org.uk/osborne

-ends-

For further information or images please contact:

Isobel Uden PR Manager, South East on 01304 209891

or email Isobel.Uden@english-heritage.org.uk

Notes to editors:

English Heritage is the custodian of over 400 historic monuments, buildings and sites through which we bring the story of England to life for over 10 million visitors each year.

ISLE OF WIGHT FEATURED IN LEADING CYCLING GUIDE

The Island’s Red Squirrel Trail has been featured in Sustrans’ Traffic Free Cycle Rides, a comprehensive guide to traffic-free cycling in the UK.

Sustrans – a leading UK charity promoting sustainable transport – produce a complete range of maps and books, including the new Traffic Free Cycle Rides, which lists the Red Squirrel Trail as one of “150 Great Days Out”.

Inspiring and informative, this comprehensive guide to traffic-free cycling is a fitting tribute to the Network Cycle Network on its 20th anniversary with a foreword from Olympic gold medallist, Joanna Rowsell MBE.   The new guide includes maps, routes for all ages and abilities and the best cycle friendly places to stay, eat and drink along the way.

Tom Ransom, Sustainable Transport Marketing Executive for Visit Isle of Wight said: “It’s great to see the Island’s top family-friendly, rail trail cycle route in this influential Sustrans’ book.

“Having the Red Squirrel Trail rubbing shoulders with the popular Camel and Tarka trails in the West Country, quite literally puts us on the traffic-free cycling map.

“As our rail trail cycle network gradually expands, it will garner even more notoriety providing opportunities for landowners and Island businesses to reap the rewards from an increasing numbers of cycle tourist’s choosing to holiday on Bicycle Island.”

Councillor Luisa Hillard, Isle of Wight Council Executive member for sustainability, environment and public realm, said: “We have an excellent cycling network on the Island and it is fantastic to see it recognised in this important guide book.

“We are working hard to upgrade many of our cycle routes to make them as accessible as possible to riders of all ages and abilities. The Squirrel Trail is a great example of an accessible family ride, which I’m sure will grow in popularity as a result of this endorsement by Sustrans.”

The book can be purchased from the Sustrans’ website http://www.sustrans.org.uk/shop/route-maps-guides/sustrans-traffic-free-cycle-rides and selected bookshops.

ENDS

For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

Notes to editors:

Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight.   As well as the consumer website (www.visitisleofwight.co.uk) the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities: www.visitwight.org

Sustrans is a British charity to promote sustainable transport. The charity is working on projects to encourage people to walk, cycle, and use public transport, to give people the choice of “travelling in ways that benefit their health and the environment”. They work with schools, communities, workplaces and decision-makers to make it easier to travel safely on foot or by bike. For more information, visit http://www.sustrans.org.uk/

Celebrating 20 years of the National Cycle Network

2015 marks the 20th anniversary of the National Cycle Network (NCN).    NCN is a series of safe, traffic-free paths and quiet on-road cycling and walking routes that connect to every major town and city. The Network passes within a mile of half of all UK homes and now stretches over 14,000 miles across the length and breadth of the UK.  http://www.sustrans.org.uk/ncn/map/national-cycle-network/celebrating-20-years-network

The Red Squirrel Trail

The Rail Trail has been well used and much loved for over a decade and has been tailored for cyclists who prefer car free cycling.http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/bicycle-island/red-squirrel-trail

 

 

MAJOR NEW FOSSIL DISCOVERY MADE ON ISLE OF WIGHT

A fossil from a dinosaur has been discovered on the Isle of Wight, more than a century since the last remains of the predator were found.

The neck vertebra of a dinosaur called ‘Calamosaurus’ was found on a recent fossil hunt by Dave Badman at Chilton Chine.  It is the first fossil of this dinosaur to have been found since the original discovery was made nearly 140 years ago on the Island by the Reverend of Brighstone parish, William Fox.

After his death in 1882, the collection of William Fox was acquired by the Natural History Museum.  While the collection was being catalogued, staff at the museum recognised two unusual vertebrae in the collection, which were later named as a new species ‘Calamosaurus Foxi’.  Since then, no other definite remains of this dinosaur have ever been found.

After finding the fossil, Mr Badman brought the specimen to Dinosaur Isle Museum in Sandown (www.dinosaurisle.com) for identification, where it is now on display.

He commented, “I have looked along the beaches for a long time, searching for fossil remains, and have had a fair amount of success.  However when I saw this fossil, I knew it was something different and that I had a great find.  I took it to Dinosaur Isle straight away to get it identified.  I am very pleased to donate my find to the museum so I know the specimen can help with the understanding of this elusive dinosaur.”

It all further enhances the Isle of Wight’s reputation as the “Dinosaur Capital of Britain” which all started in 2013 when the Natural History Museum in London awarded it that title, continued with a special Walking with Dinosaurs app which allows visitors to be photographed while walking with dinosaurs, the Isle of Wight is also linked with a major new film WALKING WITH DINOSAURS: THE 3D MOVIE, and reached its peak when Royal Mail unveiled ten commemorative dinosaur stamps – each featuring drawings by internationally famous Isle of Wight artist, John Sibbick.

Meanwhile, the Isle of Wight will launch a new event called ‘Dinosaurs by the Sea’ on July 4th/5th (during the Festival of the Sea) when – in additional to other events – there will be an attempt to build the UK’s biggest dinosaur on the beach at Ryde.

A new Dinosaur Safari Guide is also scheduled to be launched later this year.  For more details, visit http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/dinosaur-island.

Ends

For further information, please contact:

Sue Emmerson, Visit Isle of Wight Press Officer

Tel: 07766 705672      E-mail: sue@visitwight.co.uk