What's in a name...?Well we believe quite a lot! Two years ago (yes, really, it is that long already) the hostel went from being part of a major national and international organisation to becoming a small, independent business with charitable status, but we retained the name the hostel had used during the YHA years. But now we think the time has come for a new name which reflects more accurately who we are. We are incredibly proud of being an independent hostel and so, without much more ado, we give you: Derwentwater Independent Hostel!
Becoming an independent hostel has given us so much more freedom and scope to explore opportunities we just didn?t have previously. One of the most important changes is that it has enabled us to become more involved in the local community, working closely with other local businesses and suppliers to forge real partnerships, using local suppliers and encouraging locals to enjoy the hostel grounds.? Whereas before the grounds were gated off, locals and visitors are invited to take the walk down from Ashness Bridge through the hostel?s grounds, past our stunning waterfall, and pop in for tea and homemade cake ? and maybe see a red squirrel along the way! We work with several local adventure and activity providers so that we can offer groups and families an all-inclusive package. And instead of a having to use big national catering supplier we source all our food and beverage from companies based just a few miles from Keswick. With independent status, we have had the freedom to be able to work on exciting new initiatives, such as an innovative new educational development which will offer an all-round package for schools and other educational establishments, and which has immense scope for teachers and pupils alike. The hostel will also be shortly launching their new website which will reflect the new branding and provide even greater depth of information and ease of navigation than the current site. And now that we are part of the ever-increasing Independent Hostel UK (IHUK) network it means friendly support from other hostels in the Lakes and marketing support via IHUK?s website and handbook. Kathy says ?Initially we were, in all honesty, very daunted at being independent but it?s been so brilliant and liberating. I think it is significant changing our name to Derwentwater Independent Hostel ? we are very proud now of being independent.? I really think that other people see us differently and are more supportive and helpful.? The owner of our hostel, John Snyder, says, ?I am immensely proud of the Derwentwater Independent Hostel team. The first two years of any new endeavour is the hardest part. Our team started with no advance bookings, and have beaten their forecasts each year making a small surplus which we can channel back into the hostel as a not-for-profit charity. The evidence of their hard work is that we can continue past that all important two-year milestone!?