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Peak District Environmental Quality Mark Awards

PUBLISHED: 16:32 06 May 2014

Environmental Quality Mark award recipients 2013: (front) Natalia Claye of the Bakewell Soap Company; Sara Robinson of Peat Pits Farm Holiday Cottages, Julie Colley, Sladen Lodge, Catherine Payne, Green Farm Plants & Herbs; (back) Isabel Smith, Ballfield Barn; Antony Allen of the Bakewell Soap Company; Mike Monaghan of Buxton Civic Association; Sara Price, Village Green Café; and Netta Christie of Discover Buxton

Environmental Quality Mark award recipients 2013: (front) Natalia Claye of the Bakewell Soap Company; Sara Robinson of Peat Pits Farm Holiday Cottages, Julie Colley, Sladen Lodge, Catherine Payne, Green Farm Plants & Herbs; (back) Isabel Smith, Ballfield Barn; Antony Allen of the Bakewell Soap Company; Mike Monaghan of Buxton Civic Association; Sara Price, Village Green Café; and Netta Christie of Discover Buxton

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Chair of the Peak District National Park Authority, Cllr Tony Favell, presented nine new Environmental Quality Mark (EQM) Awards to Peak District businesses at a dinner held at Thornbridge Hall, near Ashford in the Water

Now with 68 award-holders, the scheme is in its 10th year and Cllr Favell said its success was ‘down to the people involved and the passion they demonstrate in creating unique products and services that help look after the environment as well as local people and communities.’ He continued: ‘Each of these businesses supports their local economy, works to reduce their environmental impact, plays an active role in their local community and helps conserve the Peak District National Park.’

Businesses attending the event included some that received awards when the scheme was launched in 2003 and so have maintained high environmental standards for over 10 years. Two special awards for outstanding contributions to the scheme were given to Paul and Elspeth Walker of Dove Valley Centre, Sheen, and to Ken Parker, now retired, who founded the scheme when he worked for the Peak District National Park Authority.

The awards celebration was organised by the Environmental Quality Mark community interest company, which took over its running from the National Park Authority in 2012. EQM director Faith Johnson said: ‘As a not-for-profit company the awards dinner is achieved on a small budget made possible thanks to the EQM award holders, from farmers to butchers to gourmet caterers, who donated their wonderful produce. Our 10 year celebration was extra special thanks to Jim and Emma Harrison who invited us all to Thornbridge Hall for the occasion.’ The event was attended by businesses from Staffordshire who participate in the Staffordshire Environmental Quality Mark, and other supporters of the occasion included Losehill House Hotel, and The Dorothy Clive Garden. Welcome drinks were Renishaw Hall pink sparkling wine and Rowley’s Cardinal Punch provided by Fischer’s of Baslow.

Gourmet Express and Strand Fine Catering created a spectacular locally produced banquet using EQM ingredients. Beef was donated by EW Coates butchers, lamb donated by J W Mettrick & Son and free range pork sausages were donated by Essington Fruit Farm. Desserts were provided by award recipients The Village Green Café in Eyam, Tindall’s of Tideswell, Hope Valley Ice Cream and Matlock Meadows Ice Cream. Handmade after dinner mints, truffles and a celebration cake were donated by the Bakewell company, Naughty & Nice. There was also a display of award-winning crafts including ceramics, soaps, Peak District wool products and turned wooden bowls.

The Peak District award winners 2013 were:

Local makers and producers: Bakewell Soap Co, Bakewell; Green Farm Plants & Herbs, Birchover

Accommodation: Ballfields Barn, Bradnop; Peat Pits Farm Holiday Cottages, Bradfield; Sladen Lodge, Hathersage

Tourism and recreation: Buxton Civic Association (Poole’s Cavern and associated woodland), Buxton; Discover Buxton, Buxton; Village Green Café, Eyam

Training and facilitation: Wayahead Training, Buxton

To find out more contact 0770 245 2777 or view www.eqm.org.uk/peakdistrict

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