Tourism chief goes on fact-finding mission in Moray and Speyside

Scotland's Tourism chief was in Moray and Speyside this week.
Scotland’s Tourism chief was in Moray and Speyside this week.

TOURISM LEADERS OF THE FUTURE and innovative new tourism business owners in Moray and Speyside were among a number of people who met VisitScotland’s Chief Executive as part of a ‘Listening Tour’ this week.

Malcolm Roughead has been visiting a number of locations across Scotland – the Chief Executive Listening Tour meetings give tourism organisations and businesses access and opportunity to speak directly to Scotland’s Tourism leader, with meetings this year focussing on emerging tourism industry leaders and younger tourism business owners, operators and influencers.

His appointments in Moray included Emma Nicolson, Marketing and Merchandising Manager at Knockando Woolmill and Jennifer Kelly, the Marketing and PR Manager for the Gordon Estate at Fochabers.
Angus Gordon Lennox, owner of Gordon Castle Estate said: “We were delighted to welcome Malcolm to Gordon Castle as part of his Listening Tour, it was an excellent opportunity to find out about VisitScotland’s vision for tourism businesses going forward.

“His visit allowed us to show him, first hand, our ongoing renovation project to breathe life back into one of Britain’s largest and oldest walled gardens, as well as our ongoing efforts to run a traditional Scottish Castle Estate. Lunch was thoroughly enjoyable and we hope to see them again soon.”

During the week Mr Roughead met Esme Saville, who recently became the Marketing and PR Manager at The Craigellachie, a 120-year-old country hotel, reopened in 2014 following a £3m refurbishment. Prior to this role, she worked as Marketing & Digital Manager at Moray Speyside Tourism.

He also hosted a round-table discussion at Elgin’s Mansefield Hotel attended by local tourism entrepreneurs, including Samantha Fraser, from Findhorn Bay Arts, Lewis Smart, from Ace Adventures, Katalin Urquhart, from Cullen Sea School, Pery Zakeri, from Speyside Whisky Festival and Sharon Davidson, from Smadug.

Mr Roughead said: “Tourism is at the heart of economic success in Moray Speyside – it creates jobs and sustains communities in every corner of Moray Speyside, all year round.

“The aim of this week’s visit to the region was to meet industry leaders, younger tourism operators and owners to discuss how we could continue to capitalise on the wealth of opportunities in the region and maximise the impact on the visitor economy.

“The businesses I have visited in Moray Speyside have demonstrated that they are all showcasing the best of what the region has to offer – from its unique heritage, history and culture right through to its world-famous links to whisky.

“What has struck me about these businesses is their authenticity – whether it has been harnessing the wonderful landscape and local environment to create a successful tourism business, or celebrating its rich history and traditions.”

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