What makes a good guided tour?
Good preparation is essential to ensuring my guests receive the best possible experience. Once I know more about your interests, the time you have available and your levels of fitness, I am able to develop an itinerary that is tailor-made for you.
I don’t bombard you with information from the very first minute. Instead, my aim is to build up your understanding gradually so that by the end of the tour you will be fully informed about what you have just seen and experienced.
Learning should be fun and that is what I want you to enjoy during our tour. By building up your understanding of the history, heritage and breathtaking landscapes of Hadrian’s Wall country or the Lake District (both World Heritage Sites), you will feel enriched with positive memories to share with others.
To give you a bit of background, before training as a Blue Badge Tour Guide, my career was in environmental interpretation (production of leaflets, booklets, posters, information panels, websites) that convey complicated messages in easy to understand ways. See www.annagray.co.uk.
On moving to Cumbria in 1994, I became Interpretation Officer for LEADER+ and produced a series of leaflets to raise awareness about local products – Cumberland sausage, real ale, damsons, local varieties of apples, Herdwick sheep, wool products, Fell Ponies and Lakeland slate. This project stimulated my interest in all aspects of Cumbria’s rich history, culture and tradition. On completion of this contract, I was commissioned by Cumbria Tourism to research the history and culture of all parts of the county for a major ‘Sense of Place’ project.
This research amassed a huge bank of information that was at my fingertips awaiting further use. That development came several years later in 2011 when I trained as a Blue Badge Tour Guide for Cumbria.
Since then, I’ve never looked back and now fill my time delivering environmental interpretation projects alongside Blue Badge tour guiding for visitors and locals alike.
I thoroughly enjoy imparting my extensive knowledge to visitors and locals in a friendly and informative way. My sole aim is for you to take away positive memories and an enhanced understanding of your visit to Cumbria, and to exceed all your expectations!