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Meals on wheels but not as you know it!

Press release   •   Jul 03, 2015 15:03 BST

The Paper Mill Restaurant in Lasswade has become the first restaurant in Scotland to receive a Cyclists Welcome Award from the national tourism organisation.

VisitScotland presented the award after being hugely impressed by the effort the team at Paper Mill made in going that extra mile to cater for people who are cycling to the restaurant.

The Paper Mill Restaurant overlooks the beautiful River Esk in the tranquil conservation village and is an all-day bar and restaurant situated in a historic paper mill.

With a long and rich history of papermaking, the Esk Valley was once home to ten mills, renowned for the production of fine papers made Esparto grass imported from Africa. The era of papermaking ended with the closure of the last mill on the Esk which ceased production in 2004.

Karen Calvert and her team at The Paper Mill Restaurant have worked hard to achieve the award making improvements such as sourcing new, specialised cycle parking from a Midlothian blacksmith, and training their staff to warmly welcome customers on wheels.

Karen Calvert of the Paper Mill Restaurant, said;

“We went for this award because The Paper Mill is a perfect refreshment pit stop for cyclists. It’s within a mile of two long-distance cycle routes, National Cycle Routes 1 and 196, and less than two miles from the Edinburgh-Loanhead-Roslin cycle route.

“I am delighted we are the first restaurant in Edinburgh and the Lothians to achieve VisitScotland’s Cyclists Welcome as this will help encourage even more cyclists to feel comfortable coming here knowing their needs will be met.”

The Paper Mill Restaurant is open seven days a week from 9am for coffees, cakes, breakfast, lunch and dinner. During the summer the large riverside terrace is open for al fresco drinking and dining and in the winter months a cosy open fire is lit in the bar area.

Staff are trained to offer a friendly welcome to all customers, and the restaurant was also recognised recently by Scottish Licensed Trade News as ‘Best Family Outlet in Scotland’ for the warm welcome given to families.

VisitScotland Regional Director, Manuela Calchini, said:

“Catering for all visitors is important and The Cyclists Welcome Award is presented to businesses which go the extra mile in terms of attention to what is particularly required by people travelling on two wheels, whether that be space for their bikes or a place to wash down their cycles. We want to continue to market Edinburgh and the Lothians as a ‘must visit, must return’ destination so I am delighted The Paper Mill Restaurant is the first restaurant in Scotland to achieve such a recognition which helps to increase visitor numbers and provide a great customer experience.”

VisitScotland’s Quality Assurance schemes are recognized as best practice around the world including Sweden and Namibia and currently boasts over 7,000 participants. Around 94% of participants in the scheme have made an investment in their business in the last few years, totaling around £70 million.

Notes to Editors

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    • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
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    Year of Food and Drink 2015

    • 2015 is the Year of Food and Drink, a celebration of Scotland’s natural larder and the role that food and drink plays in shaping our economic success.
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