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Working for the island we love

Mini Bite – from Alistair Danter – 29th 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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Intrigued by a report that the Welcome Collection in London has been wondering what to do with one of the more unusual items in their collection, namely Napoleon’s toothbrush, we have been reflecting on the sad loss of a more local collection – Macurdie’s Museum from North Skye. Their collectables and proverbs such as “life is like the wind, It’s not there when there isn’t any” was always guaranteed to get a reaction from any guest! On a more practical note: 

Entrepreneurial Masterclass on Skye

In collaboration with Lochaber and Inverness Chambers of Commerce, we are promoting an Entrepreneurial Masterclass on Skye on the 7th of February at 16:30 at the Isle of Skye Candle Company in Portree (formerly Aros). Serial entrepreneur, Angus MacDonald, will be the keynote speaker along with local entrepreneurs representing Isle of Skye Candles, Isle of Skye Sea Salt and Sonas Hotels. Tickets for the event can be purchased by clicking here.

Hospitality Training Scheme

A new training scheme has been announced by Highland Council Employability department for the hospitality sector. Click here for more info.

STA Hospitality Induction Toolkit

The STA (Scottish Tourism Alliance) has just published a Tourism/Hospitality Staff Induction Toolkit – click here to download it 

“New Year, New Supplier” Event

“New Year, New Supplier” at Kyleakin Community Hall on 28th February 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 to coincide with our AGM during the week of 13th – 17th March. Please keep an eye out for further information. 

SCOTCO EVENT

SCOTO – Scottish Community Tourism: We will be supporting a one-day event on 21st February at An Crubh. The day is for anyone involved in, or interested in, community-led tourism. For tickets and further information contact https://bit.ly/3XuFF7j  

Footpath News

Helicopter lifts of materials for the footpath repairs at the Fairy Pools have been completed. The down draft from rotor blades proved helpful in removing snow cover! The middle section between both bridges is now complete and work will start shortly on the section from the first bridge – please advise any guests planning to visit the area that contractors are working on site and there may be some disruption. Work on footpaths in the Fairyglen is ongoing while formal car parking has now been completed in the glen. 

Visit Uig

In the next few weeks, we will be working on a small promotional film for Uig and the surrounding area, paid for by Transport Scotland in recognition of the disruption caused by the cancellation of ferry sailings for the next 8 weeks. The idea of the film is to show visitors that Uig is so much more than a gateway to the Western Isles. 

SHORTBREAD Showdown

We have joined forces with other Highland Destination Management Organisations to help find the best Shortbread in the Highlands. The competition is open to all Highland Businesses to find the tastiest shortbread the region can offer! A local heat for businesses from Skye, Raasay and Lochalsh will take just THREE shortbreads forward to a final competition on the 25th of March in Inverness. Whether you’re a receptionist in a hotel, a pastry chef in a café, a restaurant manager or even a kayak instructor…….and you have a stunning shortbread recipe……….we would love you to enter the competition – click to enter

Transient Visitor Levy

Ahead of the Scottish Government legislating for the development of a locally administered Visitor Levy (Tourism tax), the Scottish Tourism Alliance has published a Manifesto. The document sets out a range of issues that should be considered in the development of a levy regime. The document can be accessed here or here.  SkyeConnect has been heavily involved in this issue since it was first raised almost five years ago. We have consulted widely and produced our own position paper that we fed into the Scottish Tourism Alliance consultation process. One of the points we were keen to have included and was expressed repeatedly at our Autumn conference was that any visitor levy must be used in part to help destinations move to Net Zero. We are pleased this is reflected in the STA document and fully supports all of the recommendations. 

Summer Sailings

CalMac’s summer timetable has now been published and can be seen here.  A freeze on fare increase will apply for the whole of the Summer up to and including Sunday 22 October. Routes can be viewed on the website from Thursday 19th January and will be available to book on Friday 20th January, except for Mallaig – Small Isles, Mallaig – Armadale, Mallaig-Lochboisdale 

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