Cash for tourism welcomed

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Western Isles MSP Alasdair Allan has welcomed today’s (Friday) announcement that the Tourism Outer Hebrides 2020 project has been awarded more than £240,000 from the Rural Tourism Fund.

The project will develop an island-wide network of facilities and infrastructure to improve visitor experience, including car parks, campervan service points, electrical hook up points and signage.

The £6 million Rural Tourism Fund was announced by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in October of 2017 in response to the tourism boom across rural Scotland.

Funds will be invested over the course of two years, 2018/19 and 2019/20, to support a wide range of improvement projects – such as parking, camping facilities, recycling points and footpath access.

Commenting, Alasdair Allan said: “Today’s announcement is very welcome. Tourism has become more and more important to the economy of the islands over the years.

“However, we need the proper infrastructure in order to sustain this and cope with increasing tourist numbers.

“We should not be afraid to remind ourselves that we live in one of the most spectacular places in the world, and this new support will hopefully enhance what will already be an incredible experience for visitors to the islands.

“Round 2 is still open for applications with the closing date for expressions of interest on October 31st. I would urge any local groups with ideas for projects to express their interest before this date.”