VisitEngland’s Visitor Attraction Quality Scheme has undergone a complete refresh following an in-depth review and industry consultation.
The changes aim to reflect the diverse attractions on offer in England and to support them to deliver the best possible visitor experience.
VisitEngland sought the views of a range of attractions and industry professionals to help identify ways to improve the scheme for the hundreds of attractions that form part of it.
As part of the updated scheme VisitEngland has introduced a series of new ‘Accolades’ which will be awarded to Attractions through a new scoring system.
The first series of Accolades will be awarded in the summer and include, among others, the Welcome Accolade, for teams that go the extra mile to look after visitors; Hidden Gem for small, well-run attractions that deserve a special mention; and the Gold Accolade for top-scoring attractions.
As part of the refreshed scheme there will be a renewed focus on the quality of the welcome and the difference it makes to the visitor experience; and greater emphasis on the quality of food and drink offered.
Attractions will also now receive reports with their scores following an assessment with suggestions and recommendations from the experienced assessors.
James Berresford, chief executive, VisitEngland said: “We have such a diverse array of wonderful and fascinating attractions in England.
“They form the backbone of our international offer, are a major part of the pull for day visits and short breaks, and make a valuable contribution to the tourism economy in this country.
“Whether a historic house or hidden gem, we’re confident that our Rose Marque will help entice visitors and can be displayed with pride by attractions of every variety.”
The scheme, which uses the internationally recognised Quality Rose Marque, represents a wide range of attractions across England, from museums and galleries, farm attractions, historic houses and gardens to churches, cathedrals and country parks.
Through a network of highly trained assessors, it supports tourism businesses to improve and promote their quality, accessibility and sustainability.