BBC Explorer Discovers Unique Eco-Degree At Buxton

Kedleston Road campus 504x257 BBC Explorer Discovers Unique Eco-Degree At Buxton

Date posted: 1 August 2013

Award-winning BBC travel presenter Simon Reeve took part in a special event at the University of Derby Buxton to launch a new BSc (Hons) Ecotourism degree, the only one of its kind in the UK.

Simon was invited to the Buxton Dome to talk about his adventures across the world and the impact - both positive and negative - that tourism can have on the ecology and economy of travellers' destinations. His career has seen him visit 110 countries, publish bestselling books and produce a number of travel documentaries, including his most recent series on Australia and the Indian Ocean. He is an adventurer in the truest sense of the word and has a keen interest in development and conservation work.

The University's new BSc Ecotourism degree explores the complex relationship between tourism and the environment.

Speaking at the event, Simon said: "It is about time that we had such a course on offer in the UK. Ecotourism is such a fantastically important subject and one that will become much more useful and important in the future.

"On my travels I see how economic development can help to lift poor people out of poverty. The course will give students really useful and professional skills which will be much in demand in the future by travel companies."

Course leader Dr Tony Johnston arranged the event to launch the degree to prospective students.

He said: "We are based in Buxton in the heart of the Peak District, one of the most visited national parks in the world. It is a great playground, and the perfect place to learn about ecotourism.

"I am particularly passionate about the social science of tourism and really looking forward to teaching students how it can be used as a positive force for economic, social and environmental change."

Some of the students already booked onto the course for September 2013 attended the launch.

Imogen Mason-Brown, a 22 year old student from Suffolk added: "I was looking for a course that dealt with travel and the outdoors so I arranged to come to the open day at Buxton hoping to find out more about the Adventure Tourism course. In the meantime, the Ecotourism degree was developed and I didn't hesitate to apply. I am really looking forward to getting stuck into the course and gaining the crucial skills that will help me in my future career."

The University is currently recruiting for September entry for the BSc Ecotourism degree. For any enquiries about outdoor programmes please visit or contact course leader Dr Tony Johnston at For further tourism programmes visit

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