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Working for the island we love

Mini Bite – from Alistair Danter – 13th August 2022

In Alistair's Mini Bite below you'll find information on Alistair Danter's work as Project Manager for SkyeConnect.

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Getting a handle on exact visitor numbers is not a science! We have to use a “basket” of information. In the last couple of weeks we have managed to get traffic data for the Skye Bridge which confirms that while there was a significant increase from 2020 to 2021, this year we are still at 2021 levels and have not yet returned to 2019 numbers. Data from footpath counters at the Fairy Pools and Old Man of Storr also confirm that numbers have not yet returned to 2019 levels however it is noticeable that more people are visiting the Fairy Pools than the Old Man of Storr, a reversal of former years. Here are a few other snippets:

Membership Matters


A number of new members have not completed their application details that enables us to set up a web listing for their business – we are very grateful for membership subscriptions, but we would like members to benefit from a web listing! If you have recently joined, or are considering joining + have a membership enquiry please contact Eilidh.munro@skye-connect.com If you have a web listing enquiry please contact carol.anderson@skye-connect.com

Marketing and Promotion related to Cost of Living

Our discussions with other DMOs and VisitScotland indicate that while a holiday remains a “must have” in family budgets, spend during the holiday is much tighter than is the past. Wellbeing is seen as a key ingredient of a good holiday. We were contacted recently by an activity provider who reported bookings in July were substantially down on last year. This prompted us to carry out a snapshot survey of the sector. There were too few responses to make the results statistically robust, but it appears that April and May were relatively OK months, although turnover was generally down on both 2021 and 2019. However, for some businesses bookings in June July and August are significantly down. The reasons given for the drop in trade were fewer visitors, the poor weather and perhaps most significantly the cost of living crisis. We urge businesses to look at their promotion and marketing accordingly to ensure that guests can be assured of value for money.

Promoting the area and Local Businesses

Please include @myskyetime and #myskyetime in your Facebook and Instagram posts, this will enable our social media staffer – Afreka Thomson – to pick up and share local business postings.

Business Housing Needs survey


SkyeConnect Directors have a meeting this week with elected members from Skye & Lochalsh to review the findings of the recent Business Housing needs survey carried out by 56 Degrees insight + widely reported in the WHFP and the national media. Our call to members will be for Highland Council to include development of mid market rental properties to the local housing market as part of the public sector housing offer for the area.

Short Term Lets

A non apology for some repetition from the last mini bite regarding Short term lets. While the Scottish Government have agreed to review the policy once it is implemented there is NO benchmark against which to measure developments. The ASSC (Association of Scottish Self Caterers) are seeking to establish a robust baseline

position for all Tourism Accommodation Businesses – that will be classed as Short-Term Lets under the new legislation which includes; self-catering units ; B&Bs; Un-licenced guest houses; Glamping pods; Yurts etc. While many of you have already responded to the survey (MANY THANKS), more responses are needed. The survey can be found at https://survey.moffatcentre.uk/index.php/294731?lang=en&mc_cid=e79c02ef31&mc_eid=c495bb0cfd

– VisitScotland has published a Short-Term Let landing page on VisitScotland.org.

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