With the volume of visitors and hopefully subsequent GDP from tourism in Orkney growing yearly, discussion on the report into Orkney Volume Tourism Management Study shall be followed with on going interest.
The awaited report into Orkney Volume Tourism Management shall be discussed on Tuesday morning (12th September), at the Orkney Islands Council’s Development and Infrastructure Committee, where they shall consider the continued growth of the tourism industry in the county.
The report which details the findings of the study, was carried out looking into the many factors which may impact on what Orkney’s valuable tourism actually offers the county, as visitor numbers continue to grow yearly.
The study looked at a number of issues including the value of tourism to Orkney, the effect on the wider tourism sector of increased tourism and the potential for the establishment of a framework for stakeholders that will inform and support future tourism strategy and management decisions.
The Orkney Volume Tourism Management Study, which was carried out and completed by Susan Staiano and Tom Matthew, can be viewed here ahead of the OIC Development and Infrastructure Committee meeting on Tuesday morning.
The study was joint-funded by Orkney Islands Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise with an additional contribution from Historic Environment Scotland.
The report into the study can be viewed here
A link enabling you to listen to the committee meeting on Tuesday morning at around 10.30 can be heard on line here
When asked about the study and the report into the study, Roddy MacKay, Ruth Kirkpatrick and Gareth Crichton responded as follows:
Roddy Mackay the Council’s Head of Planning, Development & Regulatory Services said: “Orkney is a very successful visitor destination, which has seen year on year growth in the economic value of tourism since 2009. There’s no doubt that the increased level of tourism in the county is presenting challenges to the industry. However, this is also a significant opportunity and I firmly believe that it is better to be challenged by success than by failure and I look forward to the debate with elected members at Tuesday’s meeting.”
Ruth Kirkpatrick, HIE’s head of business growth in Orkney, said: “Orkney’s tourism trade is vital to the economic viability of the islands and the boost provided by coach tours and cruise liners is welcome. However, it is clear that we must maximise the potential of this extra business in a way that sustains the quality of our tourism product for all visitors. This research sets out the opportunities and challenges that could arise, and suggests a way forward which will help ensure we have a strong, sustainable tourism industry for the future.”
Gareth Crichton, Chair of the Orkney Tourism Group said “We welcome the work that has gone into the study and are supportive of the report which has gone to the committee. Orkney Tourism Group has for some time advocated a much more active visitor and general destination management framework involving all of the key public partners working alongside the local tourism industry. The study and report appear to support such an approach. Of course volume tourism presents considerable challenges alongside the opportunities for additional revenue generation, but by working together and actively tackling the issues, we can help maintain a healthy balance within the industry while protecting and sustaining our very valuable tourism product for generations to come.
The Orkney News has previously reported on the effects of tourism in Orkney and some of the articles can be viewed below:
For more reports into tourism in Orkney go to The Orkney News and type a relevant word into the search bar.
Reporter Helen Armet