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22 Dec 20

£2.5 million emergency funding secured for Scotland’s Adventure, Wildlife and Marine Activity Sectors


The two membership organisations have worked tirelessly to secure funding for the Adventure, Wildlife and Marine Activity Sectors to support the critical start-up period ahead of spring 2021.

Yesterday, the Scottish Government announced a £2.5 million funding package for the Wildlife, Adventure, Marine and Activity Sectors in Scotland.  Businesses will be able to apply for grants from £1k to £15k in January.  This fund aims to support businesses across the whole sector that deliver anything from wildlife watching experiences to adventure and marine activities in Scotland giving them vital financial support contributing towards some of the essential pre-season costs unique to the sector.

Speaking about the emergency funding, Wild Scotland Chair, Douglas McAdam said: It has been an extremely tough year for the wildlife, adventure and activity tourism sector.  Wild Scotland has been fully engaged with the Scottish Government and agencies throughout, keeping them informed of the acute and unique difficulties the sector has been experiencing, backed up with evidence from our numerous surveys of sector businesses and making the case for the sector from guidance on restrictions and guidelines through to the need for sector specific financial support.  Although the season has now wound down for many, this important work by Wild Scotland has not stopped and we are delighted that the case we have been making direct to the Cabinet Secretary, Fergus Ewing, for crucial government funding support to enable businesses in our sector to re-start business operations for the 2021 season has been heard.  We are exceptionally pleased to welcome the Re-start Fund for the sector and look forward to working with Scottish Government, VisitScotland and Sail Scotland to get this support out to where it is desperately needed early in 2021 so that we can reap the potential of the new season to come.  This proves that as a sector, together we are stronger.” 
The outdoor activity sector in Scotland was thriving at the start of 2020. Operators were excited about the year ahead with a real energy, working towards delivering responsible and sustainable activities benefiting the rural economy and fragile communities.  2020 has been tough across the board and without this vital support many businesses that exist in a vibrant sector full of opportunity would end prematurely in failure.

The sector is perfectly positioned to drive the demand for tourism in the country, with incredible potential to support the economic recovery of the wider tourism industry in Scotland and above all, will undoubtedly play a significant role in supporting the mental wellbeing and recovery of Scottish people and those beyond, when it is safe to return, following a detrimental year.

This fund will help multiple businesses by providing them with vital support before the start of the season, allowing them to be operational, delivering quality experiences ahead of a potentially monumental year ahead for wildlife, adventure and marine tourism.

This is fantastic news for these sectors in Scotland and receiving this news going into a new year is terrific. Huge thanks to Wild Scotland for all their hard working during this year. Let’s hope that this will keep heads above water until the spring.” Matt Smith, Primal Adventures. 

VisitScotland have been appointed by the Scottish Government to award the grants and more information will be made available to businesses at the start of January. 

For further information contact: 

Victoria Brooks
Wild Scotland Manager
M – 07868339404
E –


Notes to Editors

  • Wild Scotland is the National Association representing the Wildlife, Activity and Adventure Tourism Sector in Scotland.
  • Our members offer everything from wilderness walking holidays and mountain biking tours to whale-watching boat trips and bushcraft activities.  They are committed to providing best practice and deliver some of the most inspiring experiences that Scotland has to offer.
  • Wild Scotland works closely with the Scottish Tourism Alliance, VisitScotland and the Scottish Government representing the interests of the Wildlife, Adventure and Activity Sector in Scotland.
  • @wildscotland


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