The Forest of Bowland makes Countryfile magazine's awards shortlist

The Forest of Bowland has been shortlisted for a prestigious award.
The Forest of Bowland has been shortlisted for a prestigious award.
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The Forest of Bowland has been shortlisted as the 2018 Best Holiday Destination in the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards.

Now in their seventh year, the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards 2018 are a celebration of the British countryside and its people, from mighty landmarks and outstanding national parks to the best nature reserves and finest rural pubs.

This year, they invited readers to send in their suggestions for the greatest sites in the countryside. Their panel of expert judges scrutinised all the suggestions and deliberated for hours to select five outstanding contenders in each category.

One of the panel experts and Countryfile presenter, John Craven, speaking about the Forest of Bowland, said: “At the very centre of mainland Britain, this is one of the most unspoiled of all holiday destinations in the UK. Although I’m a little worried that by nominating it, it might become too popular!”

Hetty Byrne, Sustainable Tourism Officer for the Forest of Bowland AONB, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be shortlisted for this prestigious award! Here in the Forest of Bowland we work closely with tourism organisations, businesses and communities to help protect our beautiful landscape, while at the same time increasing opportunities for visitors to discover and enjoy its special qualities. As one of 46 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Forest of Bowland offers some of the UK’s best countryside for walking, cycling and wildlife-watching, and it’s great that the BBC Countryfile Magazine readers think so too!”

Ruth Connor, Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire, said: “The Forest of Bowland is a jewel in Lancashire’s crown, an unspoilt destination full of natural wonders to thrill, excite and surprise the visitor. Its rugged, wide open spaces and quiet lanes make it perfect for walkers, cyclists and those willing to head off other well-beaten tracks to experience one of England’s most beautiful destinations. With its idyllic villages, Dark Sky status, on-the-farm attractions, pubs with breath-taking views and welcoming places to stay, it’s no surprise to us that the Forest of Bowland has been shortlisted in these awards.”

Voting is open from tomorrow (Friday) until midnight on March 5th. Readers can vote online via www.countryfile.com/awards, or by post, sending the form in the February issue of the magazine to BBC Countryfile Magazine, 2nd floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol, BS1 3BN.