Tonight last opportunity to register for Argyll and the Isles Tourism Summit

With free transport arranged for part of the journey to Mount Stuart in Bute on 13th March for the 2013 Argyll and the Isles annual Tourism Summit, security arrangements with passenger manifests means that tonight is the last night for registration. Travel details are below – and the link to the booking website is here.

In the spirit of the partnership working that distinguishes tourism industry development in Argyll and the Isles, CalMac, Kintyre Express, West Coast Motors and Portavadie Marina are providing free transport for delegates to Mount Stuart as follows:

  • CalMac are offering free passenger fares on the Wemyss Bay to Rothesay ferry; the Colintraive to Rhubodach ferryl and the Tarbet to Portavadie Ferry.
  • Portavadie Marina are then running a minibus to the  Colintraive to Rhubodach Ferry – where West Coast Motors will take them to Mount Stuart.daily
  • Kintyre Express are again providing the thrills, with their fast passenger boats leaving the pontoon at Campbeltown [opposite the Royal Hotel] for Bute at 07.00 hours from Campbeltown Pontoon opposite the Royal Hotel. This will be a 2 hour journey – weather permitting – so keep an eye here for weather forecasts for the Campbeltown area:

Delegates must be registered to take advantage of these offers.

 Now – back to the event

It’s theme is ‘turning our assets into experiences’ – which is what the industry is about and Argyll and the Isles has assets to dazzle.

The schedule

It runs from 9.30-16.00 and the schedule is:

9.30 – to 10.30 Registration with breakfast at the Mount Stuart Visitor Centre [with breakfast rolls - and yes, we understand they're bacon - and coffee]

10.30-12.30 Morning session in the Marble Hall at Mount Stuart House. Key speakers are:

  • Welcome to Mount Stuart & The Argyll & the Isles Tourism Summit 2013 – Connie Lovel, CEO Mount Stuart and Director of AITC (10 mins)
  • ‘Finding the Future in the Past’ and a brief word from the Scottish Government – Cllr Louise Glen-Lee, Acting Chairperson Argyll & the Isles Strategic Tourism Partnership (5 mins)
  • Argyll & the Isles in Action – ‘Looking back/looking forward’ and launch of the new website ‘Uniquely Argyll’ – with event MC – Mike Story, Executive Director AITC (20 mins)
  • Argyll and the Isles – Growth is Within Your Grasp’ – Tourism Scotland 2020 and our call to action: Stephen Leckie, Chair of Scottish Tourism Alliance (25 mins)
  • Partnership Working – at the heart of turning assets into experiences – Riddell Graham, Director of Partnerships, Visitscotland (20 mins)
  • Managing the Customer Journey – taking steps to proactively manage the quality of the visitor experience throughout the whole customer journey – Martin Dorchester, CEO, Calmac (20 mins)
The morning session will conclude with a 15 minute Question and Answer session hosted by the man with the mic – Robert Pollock of Argyll and Bute Council.


12.30-14.15 Action packed lunch break in the Mount Stuart Visitor Centre. There will be transfers from  Mount Stuart to the Visitor Centre, where…

  • Networking lunch from Mount Stuart’s Head Chef showcasing eatBute and Scottish ingredients and with ‘speed dating’ linked to ‘How well do you really know Argyll & the Isles – and each other’.
  • Tour of the house – book in advance – 12.40/1.10/1.40pm (25 people max per tour)
  • Argyll & the Isles Market Place (various stalls, talks and displays in the Main House and Visitor Centre)

Afternoon session

14.15-15.25 Delegates go straight to their chosen afternoon breakout sessions in Mount Stuart: in the Drawing Room, Dining Room, Armoury and Crypt. Each delegate chooses two breakouts and all venues are close to the Marble Hall.

Breakout topics and hosts are:
  • 3175 miles of coastline and 25 inhabited islands… making the most of our unique coastal waters and the Commonwealth Games Flotilla in 2014 – James Stuart, COO, Royal Yachting Association
  • 60 medieval castles and the cradle of Scottish Christianity… celebrating our unique cultural offering and Iona 2013 – Kari Coghill, Head of Visitor Engagement, Historic Scotland
  • Nature’s Paradise – where history and wildlife live side by side … expanding our Active & Nature Based Tourism offer –Caroline Warburton, Manager, Wildscotland
  • Scotland’s natural larder and home to 14 world class distilleries… developing our local food and drink offer in 2014 – James Withers, CEO, Scottish Food & Drink

15.25-15.40 Coffee and Tea Break

15.40 Argyll & the Isles – what next? – Mike Story, Exec Director AITC (15 mins)

15.55 Farewell and Close of Scottish Tourism Week 2013 – Mike Story & Stephen Leckie (5 mins)

16.00 Until next year – close and transfer to ferries.

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