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Scottish Borders are 'Closer Than You Think'

A new £2 million marketing campaign is being launched to draw more English visitors to the Scottish Borders.

The Closer Than You Think campaign is being run by VisitScotland, and it's part of their wider Brilliant Moments scheme.

The organisation says English tourists are valuable to the economy in the Borders, and that in 2013:

245,000
English visitors to Scottish Borders
£53m
Spent by English visitors

Many people south of the border may still think that getting to Scotland is a real mission in terms of distance and transport, but with exceptional new and direct rail and air connections it can actually be quicker to get to Glasgow for example than to make the daily journey to work for some commuters.

Highlighting that makes people realise that the fantastic range of things to see and do which regions like The Scottish Borders offer is actually very much within their reach.

We want to encourage the rest of the UK to come and visit their neighbours in Scotland and discover not only how easy it is to get here, but also how deliciously brilliant it is once they’ve arrived, with world-class attractions, landscapes, heritage, food and drink and culture."

– Charlie Smith, Director of Marketing at VisitScotland

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Whitehouse Country House comes out top

The owners of a guest house in St Boswells are celebrating after winning a prestigious national tourism award.

Whitehouse Country House beat off competition from across the county to be crowned "Best Guest House".

The Scottish Thistle Award, organised by Visit Scotland, was presented to owner Angela Tyrer, at Kelvingrove Art Gallery in Glasgow.

She said:

"This is a real and wonderful surprise, all the finalists looked amazing and yet all so different. Hospitality is at the core of our business and this is the reason that my husband Roger who is the co-proprietor cannot be here tonight as he is at home looking after our guests.

"Winning brings its own responsibility and we hope to use the publicity to not only promote our own B&B, but also to help further promote our village, St. Boswells, which has multi-award winning businesses, great sporting facilities and beautiful countryside of the Scottish Borders.

– Angela Tyrer, Owner of Whitehouse Guest House

"As Scotland prepares to welcome the world in 2014, quality is more important than ever.

"I am thrilled that Whitehouse Country House has scooped this well-deserved award for its contribution to tourism. Recognising excellence in the industry is helping Scotland shine and accommodation providers like Whitehouse Country House help to put this part of Scotland well and truly on the map!"

– Paula McDonald, Regional Director of VisitScotland