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Slow Adventure Scoops Awards at VisitScotland Expo

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West Highland College UHI’s Centre for Recreation and Tourism research took their ‘Slow Adventure in Northern Territories’ (SAINT) project to VisitScotland’s Expo at the Scottish Exhibition Centre in Glasgow last month.  Promoting new nature-based tourism experiences in Lochaber, recently developed as part of the project’s Scottish case study, they attracted considerable industry interest and walked away with a brace of awards!

The wild camp-themed stand attracted a fantastic level of interest from international tour operators, as well as from VisitScotland stand judges, resulting in two awards – “Best New Exhibitor” and “Most Effective Personnel”.  The project representative, Sara Mair Bellshaw, based at the Centre for Recreation and Tourism Research at West Highland College UHI in Fort William, collected the awards from VisitScotland’s chief executive, Malcolm Roughead, at the Expo dinner.

The stand introduced slow adventure to the industry as a new marketing concept for nature-based tourism, using a clustering model to bring together a range of tourism businesses to create slower-paced, more immersive consumer experiences set in the amazing land- and sea-scapes of Lochaber.  These clusters are the result of months of working with local businesses to test the effectiveness of collaboration that enables these micro-businesses to diversify their existing products and combine their expertise and offerings to broaden and enhance their promotional potential.  “All of these amazing experiences have been brought together in a brochure pitched at tour operators, which we hope will see them offering these experiences to their consumers”, explained the head of centre, Dr Steve Taylor.

The trans-national SAINT project is part-financed by the Northern Periphery and Arctic programme, with co-financing from Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the Highland Council.  The lead partner is West Highland College UHI, an academic partner of the University of the Highlands and Highlands.  To view the current slow adventure brochure go to www.slowadventure.scot, to follow slow adventure across the seven countries involved in the project please follow @slowadventuring social media pages.

 

For more information about the SAINT project contact:

sara.bellshaw.whc@uhi.ac.uk  |  01397 874035

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