To encourage a range of tourism opportunities based on the unique character of Wensleydale. To manage and communicate effectively with visitors to help ensure the area’s special qualities are maintained

Why is this important?

Wensleydale attracts visitors from across the world. They are drawn here by its special qualities, settlements and outdoor activities. People visit with different interests and levels of knowledge about the area. Most undertake activities without formal management or intervention; this is as it should be. Apart from providing access to ample open space for different types of outdoor activity, Wensleydale provides a sanctuary from urban pressures, and places for people to connect with wildlife and the natural environment. It provides a cultural identity, a sense of place and well-being for the people who live here.

The contribution tourism provides to the local Dales economy, on average, is worth £210 million per year. It employs 18% of the local work force which in turn contributes to the Dales economy and helps retain local people within Wensleydale.

What are the specific problems?

The vast majority of visitors and locals make use of the 600km network of rights of way. However there is relatively limited access to the waterfalls within the project area. Visitors are directed to two areas of the river system to view the waterfalls. At these locations, information for visitors relates to the surrounding woodland but not to the wider countryside and the river system.

Greater awareness of the existence and value of local suppliers and activities amongst local businesses will create stronger local supply chains and a more self-sustaining local economic base.

Businesses share a common understanding of the important characteristics of the area but this needs to be presented in a coherent and attractive way in their own promotional material to help visitors understand and appreciate the area more deeply.

What are we going to do?

Develop a new walking trail so that people can explore Wensleydale, enjoying the water features that are important for the valley and taking in important heritage and land management locations. These will include Dales Countryside Museum, Wensleydale Creamery, Semerwater, Aysgarth Falls, Redmire Falls, Bolton Castle, Mill Gill Falls and Hardraw Force. 

Manage and communicate effectively with visitors to help ensure the area’s special qualities are maintained

Help businesses in the area to promote local goods and services to visitors which help support local businesses