Cairngorms recovery plan secures £350,000

Snowy mountains
Lisa Paton

A three-year project to restore confidence and resilience in the tourism sector in the Cairngorms National Park area has secured £350,000 from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).

The project, by Cairngorm Business Partnership (CBP) will deliver a series of initiatives aimed at inspiring, enabling and delivering destination recovery. The HIE funding will ensure that the CBP is sufficiently resourced to play a vital role in the recovery of tourism across the Cairngorms and two new jobs will be created at the organisation.

Tourism is vital to the Cairngorms National Park, accounting for 30 percent of the economy (GVA), 43 percent of employment and an estimated 2m visitors annually.

As part of the project, CBP will provide support, advice and signposting to communities looking to improve their visitor offering. It will work with partners such as Cairngorms National Park Authority, neighbouring destination management organisations and businesses and help establish new visitor offerings where there are opportunities. 

The project will provide support and empower communities, which are an essential part of the visitor experience. It will enable communities to take ownership of local tourism developments and infrastructure projects, equip tourism businesses with the skills to rebuild their businesses and access new markets including through the travel trade.

New roles at CBP will focus on building and maintaining relationships with key stakeholders to improve existing and create new sustainable visitor products. It will also create and promote a one-stop-shop for event organisers in the National Park, while continuing to support businesses and communities to deliver outstanding visitor experiences.

The HIE funding is from £3m approved by the agency in September 2020 to support strategically important tourism destination management organisations over the next three years, as part of wider support for the tourism sector’s recovery.