Hampshire County Council's Milestones Museum in Basingstoke is officially among the country's top tourist attractions having been named in the Visit England Quality Assurance Scheme.
Attractions can only join the scheme if they pass a mystery inspection which ensures that visitors can enjoy a high quality day out, measured against strict criteria for all visitor attractions in England. The scheme, judged by experienced assessors, helps attractions to continue to improve the quality of the visitor experience. In their visit to Milestones, the assessor described the Museum as a 'paradise for children'.
Hampshire County Council Executive Member for Culture, Recreation and Countryside, Councillor Keith Chapman, said: "This is the first time that the Museum has applied to join this prestigious scheme and I'm delighted that it has now been recognised as one of England's top attractions. We've always known that Milestones offers visitors a great day out, with hundreds of thousands of people enjoying our lively and interactive approach to history.
"Attractions such as the hugely popular LEGO®Mania 2013 event which recently attracted thousands of visitors, mean the venue makes a valuable contribution to Basingstoke's visitor economy with visits from not only local people and schools, but the attraction also forms part of short breaks and holidays for people staying in the area. This latest national accreditation is testament to the high quality experience that our team provides at this fantastic venue and we look forward to continuing to welcome visitors from Hampshire and beyond to explore this unique attraction."
Sheila Hennings, Manager for Milestones Museum, said "I am pleased to attain this nationally recognised standard for the Museum. We strive to ensure that every person who visits Milestones enjoys their day, and takes away great memories of this extraordinary place."
An inventive programme of events ensures there are a variety of reasons for regular visitors to return to the Museum throughout the year.
Visitors are currently escaping the heat to enjoy the family-friendly Teddy Time. Children are invited to bring their teddy for a fantastic day out on a teddy theme. They can make accessories for their teddy, and adventurous bears can enjoy a free ride in a hot air balloon in among the rooftops of Milestones! There is even the opportunity to buy an in-ride photo. During the ongoing warm weather, visitors can even enjoy a Teddy Bear's Picnic in the air-conditioned picnic room on the ground floor of the Museum.