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We understand some days in your life are extra special. We really do. And we appreciate that few, if any, are more important than your wedding day. You want to know it’s in safe, capable, passionate hands. As many of our hotels are licensed for civil ceremonies, we’re also happy to host your actual wedding as well as your reception. Whatever your choice, when you get hitched, we’ll make sure your special day goes without a hitch. That’s a Hallmark promise.

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Five Fun Facts - Lara Croft: Derby's Sweetheart


I was very interested to find out that one of my children’s favourite video game characters – Lara Croft originates from Derby. downloadShe is recognised as “the most successful human video game heroine” by The Guinness Book of Records and, by MSN, as the third most iconic video game character after Mario and Sonic. Step forward Lara Croft, all round super hero and one of Derby’s most famous daughters. The gun-toting, pneumatic explorer was created in Derby by Toby Gard at the company Core Design, in 1996, and soon blasted her way up the gaming charts in the multi-platform classic Tomb Raider. Croft found herself subsequently immortalised by Angelina Jolie in two Hollywood movies, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, and the character sparked numerous game sequels as well as spin-off comic books, novels, and even theme park rides. Here are Five Fun Facts about this exceptional Derby girl: 1. Lara was based on Indiana Jones, (with inspiration also coming from graphic novel icon, Tank Girl and pop star Neneh Cherry), and was originally supposed to be a South American explorer called Lara Cruz. 2. Despite packing some heavy weaponry, Lara Croft never actually harms anyone with a gun throughout the entire film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. 3. In the late 1990s Time magazine placed Lara Croft higher than  the Pope in their survey of the most recognisable people in the world. 4. Former England goalkeeper, David James once admitted in an interview that he had given away sloppy goals after tiring himself out with late-night Tomb Raider sessions! 5. Finally, so enamoured are the people of Derby by their virtual heroine that they voted to name a new £36.2m road after her in 2010. Over 27,000 people took part in the vote, with a staggering 89% of them plumping for 'Lara Croft Way'. Watch out for a new Tomb Raider game in 2013. By David Croasdale

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