An open meeting was held recently at Oban Sailing Club that has shape-changing capacities for Argyll and the Isles and for Scotland.
It was agreed that a working group will be set up to create a Marine Tourism Hub.
That working group will include key members of the marine tourism industry in the area: Outside Edge, Stramash, Craobh Haven Watersports, Coastal Connections, Atlantis, and Oban Sailing Club and will be supported in its creation by Argyll Voluntary Action and Argyll and the Isles Tourism.
The purpose of the hub will be to develop, encourage, support, market and sustain the marine tourism industry.
The organisation is not intending itself to be a provider of watersports services.
It aims to become the Scottish hub for marine based leisure activities that tourists and community alike can enjoy, based in Oban.
The watersports industry will be structured, networked and grown so as to make living and visiting the West Coast of Scotland attractive and rewarding.
The initiative will be industry-led, with a remit to focus on priorities agreed at the meeting in each of the five areas identified as being necessary for success:
- Events and marketing
- Education and training
One of the priorities agreed is to co-ordinate and publish, in conjunction with existing online diaries, a comprehensive schedule of events and activities happening in marine tourism in the area. This should be available on the For Argyll and Oban Town Diary in the near future.
Mike Story of Argyll and the Isles Tourism says of the outcomes:
‘I was delighted to see such a great turnout of enthusiastic people all getting behind the development of a Marine Tourism hub.
‘Argyll and the Isles Tourism’s premise of ‘stronger together’ applies right across geographic and sectoral areas, with Marine tourism an undoubted pillar of tourism development in our area’
In For Argyll’s view, this is exactly the sort of initiative to drive Argyll and the Isles forwards with one of our major strengths to the fore – our marine and marine activities resources.
There is evidence of recognition at all levels of government that there is a growing and rooted demand for activity tourism and that Scotland – and Argyll in particular – has the capacity to serve this need and tjis market uniquely well.
Note: Those interested in being part of this industry initiative – which will benefit Scotland as well as Argyll and the Isles, should email: email@example.com