All aboard for St Kilda Challenge!

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An inaugural yachting challenge to St Kilda is one of 13 events to be supported by the EventScotland National Funding Programme as part of VisitScotland’s strategy ‘Scotland the Perfect Stage’.

The St Kilda Challenge and Festival, was granted £10,000.

Taking place from June 9th to 11th members of the national and international yachting and sailing fraternity will take part in this unique and challenging Hebridean event, sailing from Lochmaddy, North Uist, to St Kilda.

Throughout the event weekend, there will be a rich diverse onshore programme of cultural, educational and musical events.

St Kilda is one of the few places in the world with Dual World Heritage Status - awarded for its natural and cultural significance.

Gus Macaulay, Chair of Comann na Mara / St Kilda Challenge, said: “Comann na Mara (The Society of the Sea) was formed to establish an eco-friendly aquatic education and marine research facility at Lochmaddy.

“We have helped organised the event with associated partners and I was overjoyed to hear that we were being awarded £10,000 in the last round of EventScotland National Programme funding.

“I am keen that this money is fruitfully used to ‘futureproof’ the event, by creating a series of mini documentaries about the event which can be shown to clubs, groups and any other interested parties, to give them a taster of what this challenge and festival is all about.

“It’s much more than just a yachting race in the Outer Hebrides, it is a three-day festival which will offer something for everyone, including music and dance, talks and workshops.”

Alan Mackenzie, VisitScotland Islands Manager, said: “I am delighted that the St Kilda Challenge & Festival has secured this important funding which, in turn, benefits the Outer Hebrides and beyond and allows the event to create an even more attractive proposition to potential attendees.

“Funding delivered through the National Programme is crucial in encouraging people to travel around Scotland, including to the Outer Hebrides, and contributes greatly to the economies of several local authority areas with every funding round.

“Additionally, it helps to promote a positive image of Scotland and the Outer Hebrides to audiences domestically and in neighbouring markets, which is invaluable to the visitor economy.”