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Rural tourism infrastructure projects to receive share of £3m funding


A total of £3m has been awarded to 10 tourism projects across Scotland, to improve visitor facilities and access and to promote low-carbon transport options.The projects have all been recommended for approval – subject to conditions – to receive cash from round five of the Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund (RTIF).Managed by VisitScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government, the RTIF was created to improve the quality of the visitor experience in rural parts of Scotland that have faced pressure on their infrastructure due to this increase in visitor numbers. It aims to reduce the impact of visitor numbers on local communities and facilities and create a more collaborative and sustainable approach to infrastructure provision and long-term maintenance of local facilities for the benefit of communities.Round five of RTIF was extremely competitive, with 15 applications considered by the assessment panel, made up of representatives from the Scottish Government, COSLA, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, NatureScot and Architecture and Design Scotland, as well as VisitScotland. Successful applications this round included the first RTIF approval for Renfrewshire Council for Lochwinnoch Boardwalk, in partnership with the RSPB.Round five was open to applications from local authorities and National Park authorities, in partnership with their communities, and focuses on delivering projects that increase access to facilities and encouraging sustainable travel. Round five applications recommended for approval include:

  • £477,270 to upgrade the existing visitor infrastructure on the Isle of Staffa, in Argyll & Bute, to improve the visitor experience by reducing overcrowding and increasing visitor safety. This will comprise development of an upgraded and significantly larger boat landing jetty which will provide additional space for seating, a waiting area and improve visitor flow.
  • £350,000 towards the Glencoe Greenway, a new low-level active travel route which will follow the A82 from Glencoe village into Glencoe National Nature Reserve and will directly connect with the popular National Cycle Network route 78 – the Caledonia Way. The project comprises two elements: A new path and an upgraded pathway. Missing link of 2km new path from Glencoe Visitor Centre to Signal Rock and 2km upgraded existing path from A82 Glencoe Village to Glencoe Visitor Centre.
  • £207,886 to develop and build accessible path links to Bonaly Country Park, Edinburgh, as part of the STID Pentland Hills Sustainable Access project, which seeks to reduced car parking requirements in the long term by providing accessible non-vehicle links to the Park.
  • £85,553 to develop six overnight motorhome bays with electric hook-ups and grey water disposal point as part of the Urgha Aire project, just outside Tarbert in the Outer Hebrides, to help deal with the increase in campervans and motorhomes arriving on the island. 
  • The Urgha Aire project in particular will specifically target the provision of overnight campervan stops and grey water disposal to alleviate pressures on Tarbert and the surrounding area - the provision of more formal camping locations being a key recommendation of the Harris Visitor Management Strategy.


 | LA/Nat Park Authority    | Project | RTIF funding recommended | Argyll and Bute Council | Glen Lochy and Glen Orchy visitor facilities improvement | £332,334 | Argyll and Bute Council | Staffa Conservation and access infrastructure development | £477,270 | City of Edinburgh Council | Bonaly Country Park car park improvements and access route | £207,886 | Comhairle nan Eilean Siar | Urgha Aire | £85,553 | Highland Council | Achmelvich Beach car park and toilets | £500,000 | Highland Council | Glencoe Greenway | £350,000 | Highland Council | NW Highland public toilet provision | £243,218 | Highland Council | Stac Pollaidh | £440,859 |   |   |  | Renfrewshire Council | Lochwinnoch Boardwalk | £182,420 | Stirling Council | Trossachs scenic viewpoints | £231,000


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Rural tourism infrastructure projects to receive share of £3m funding

A total of £3m has been awarded to 10 tourism projects across Scotland, to improve visitor facilities and access and to promote low-carbon transport options

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