The program aims to promote excellence within the Queensland tourism industry. It “identifies and recognises experiences that best bring the Queensland story to life and consistently deliver an exceptional customer experience”.
The program is based on an independent set of criteria. These incorporate online customer reviews, responds to consumer expectations, and reflects industry best practice.
Mary Valley Rattler on prime time UK TV
As well as receiving such a worthy recognition, the much-loved steam train also has a starring role in the new season of the United Kingdom Channel 5’s hugely popular World’s Most Scenic Railway Journeys.
The Rattler received a high profile in the Bill Nighy-narrated documentary. The episode followed a rail journey along the Queensland coast.
The TV crew spent over two days filming the historic Rattler and the surrounding Gympie and Mary Valley region. This includes the village of Amamoor. The episode features an interview with Rattler steam train driver, Adrian Hurley. Mr Hurley also assists the organisation with training, assessments and coaching.
The Mary Valley Rattler joins many of the world’s most famous rail journeys and was selected because of its rich history, and the spectacular landscape the train traverses.
The program synopsis
It’s a chance to stop off and travel back in time. It was gold that brought the railways to Gympie, and the Mary Valley Rattler offers a chance to experience Queensland as it was in the pioneering days.
A train pulled by a 1920’s C17 loco, No967, one of 182 built in Queensland takes the crew high into the Amamoor National Park where they spend time with one of Australia’s strangest beasts: the Duck Billed Platypus.
Episodes of the World’s Most Scenic Railway Journeys attract more than 1.7 million viewers in the UK alone. The show will be broadcast throughout the world later in the year. SBS has broadcast previous series of the program in Australia.
Mary Valley Rattler general manager Linda Barry says the recognition of the Rattler in the Best of Queensland Experiences program and then on prime-time TV in the UK is important for promoting the attraction and the region to consumers and the travel industry both in Australia and internationally.
Volunteers bring the passion
“Being a volunteer-based organisation means there is passion in the way we deliver our tourism experience,” Ms Barry says. “That was reflected in the World’s Most Scenic Railway Journeys episode.”
Ms Barry says the ‘Best of Queensland’ accreditation is something it doesn’t take for granted.
“We are continually reviewing and upgrading our services to meet changing consumer demands. This is precisely what the Best of Queensland Experiences Program assesses.
“After the impact of floods and pandemic, the recognition and profile we have received over the past few weeks will play an important role in rebuilding the Mary Valley Rattler’s business. Plus it provides wonderful exposure for the Gympie region’s tourism attractions.”
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