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Visit Scotland | Alba
Article published 07/06/2019

A campaign celebrating the legacy of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Mackintosh 150 and beyond, has boosted visitor numbers to Mackintosh attractions in Scotland by more than a quarter. On Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s birthday (Friday 7 June), new results showing the success of the campaign have been revealed.

The campaign ran from June 2018 until March 2019 and was led by Glasgow Life, the Glasgow Mackintosh Group, ScotRail and supported by a £40,000 VisitScotland Growth Fund award. It helped to attract 1.2 million people to Mackintosh venues. This reflects a 29% increase in footfall compared with the same period the previous year.

The Mackintosh 150 and beyond campaign was focused on promoting Mackintosh venues and events in and around Glasgow and the west of Scotland to visitors in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Dundee. It was also aimed at encouraging UK short-break visitors to consider making a Mackintosh-inspired trip to Glasgow in 2019.

The campaign’s activity included a mix of digital and social media content creation, radio and outdoor advertising and traditional media and blogger engagement. A short Mackintosh video achieved nearly 2 million views while the campaign’s radio promotions reached over 628,000 people across Scotland and content produced with journalists and bloggers reached over 179,000. A unique landing page on the website achieved over 30,000 views.

2018 was a milestone year for Mackintosh heritage partners in Glasgow and across the country, with Mackintosh 150 – a year-long programme of events, workshops and exhibitions – celebrating the 150th anniversary of the birth and legacy of one of Scotland’s great cultural icons.

Highlights included ‘Making the Glasgow Style’, a major temporary Mackintosh exhibition at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, which is now on tour at The Walker Gallery in Liverpool. We also saw the opening of Mackintosh at The Willow, a £10 million tea room and visitor centre in the heart of Glasgow and the opening of The Mackintosh Club in Helensburgh.

Glasgow: The Ultimate Mackintosh Experience

Mackintosh’s 150th anniversary gave Glasgow and Scotland the opportunity to showcase our unique Mackintosh heritage to the world. Mackintosh is central to the growth ambitions as set out in the Glasgow Tourism and Visitor Plan to 2023, and this outstanding collaborative marketing campaign will have made a significant contribution to the city’s success.

At VisitScotland, we want to champion collaboration and spearhead digital innovation which helps every part of the country make the most of their tourism offering. I was delighted that we could support this campaign with a Growth Fund award and help it achieve these impressive results.

Jim Clarkson, VisitScotland Regional Leadership Director

We were delighted to have the support of VisitScotland’s Growth Fund, which has allowed us to deliver an innovative and successful campaign and work collaboratively with city and national partners to promote the critical legacy of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Mackintosh is part of the very fabric of Glasgow and the overwhelmingly positive response we’ve had to this campaign, backed by a record number of visitors to Mackintosh venues and events in Glasgow and beyond, confirms the huge interest and affection there is for him both at home and globally. As such, his cultural legacy remains one of our prime pillars for tourism growth and is central to our destination marketing in the UK and internationally.

Councillor David McDonald, Chair of Glasgow Life and Deputy Leader of Glasgow City Council