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Mini Bite – from Alistair Danter – 14th January 2023

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

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Dear Colleague – bliadhna mhath ur and welcome to the first Mini Bite for 2023 (which also happens to be the year of the rabbit. Sometimes it feels like I am a rabbit in the headlamps dealing with the plethora of challenges facing our industry!).
Calls around operators seem to suggest that bookings for the year are looking positive but this doesn’t change the fact that the operating environment for the year will be difficult. We were interested to note correspondence in the Economist magazine from a Mr Richard Kendon from British Columbia in Canada, announcing that he had deleted his Twitter account and predicts (or at least hopes) that the social-media outfit will be much reduced by the end of the year, with governments and businesses making much less use of it. Could we suggest that one less communication channel may be of benefit to us all – but not, of course, SkyeConnects’ bi-monthly mini bite!

Dates For Your Diary

“New Year, New Supplier” at Kyleakin Community Hall on February 28th with free admission for the public. Anyone with a product or service who would like a stall at the event to market to local tourism businesses should contact info@skye-connect.com. We are also planning a Spring conference, date to be agreed upon, to coincide with our AGM during the week 13th – 17th March. Please keep an eye out for further information

Scottish Community Tourism Event

SCOTO – Scottish Community Tourism: We will be supporting a one day event on 21st February at An Crubh. The day is for any this is for anyone involved or interested in community led tourism. For tickets and further information click here.

EV Charge Points

A reminder that any business with an EV charger point that is available for guests in Skye, Lochalsh and Raasay is eligible for a free listing for one year on the MySkyeTme website. Just send us photographic evidence of the charge point and associated paperwork along with your business details. Here is an example from The Pipers Hut

Do you host guests with bikes?

We have had contacts with Scottish Mountain Bike tourism with information on their grants, and other useful resources. Information can be found here.

Uig Ferry Update

CalMac ferry sailings from Uig will be halted for a 6 week period from this coming weekend (January 14th/15th). For full details click here. CalMac Summer sailings will be published in late January 2023 once Transport Scotland confirms the 2023 fare levels.

Some Important Issues We Are Looking at Right Now

Three significant issues occupying our time at the moment:

– A diversified economy for Skye, Raasay and Lochalsh – Renewable energy, fish farms, creative industries, Hydrogen production – how can the Tourism sector work and thrive in a more diverse economy?

– The deposit return scheme, due to come into force in 2023 is showing signs that it will create significant issues for operators. Click here to read the latest update from Circular Economy Minister to Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee. 

– Licencing for Short terms lets

We will be producing short position papers on all 3 issues in the coming weeks.

“Thought for the moment”

Britain is one of only four countries in the OECD, a club of 38 mainly rich countries, where rising economic inactivity has driven a fall in the employment rate since the covid-19 pandemic. Recent figures from the Office for National Statistics show that the share of the working-age population that is economically inactive fell in the three-month period from August to October ‘22 compared with the period from May to July ‘22; the reduction was caused largely by the return to work of some of the many 50- to 64-year-olds who had dropped out of the workforce……….. probably during Covid but are now having to return to work due to the cost of living crisis …. We live in complicated times!

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