Forth Valley networking | event overview
Forth Valley’s tourism industry was reunited after almost three years at a special in-person event hosted for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
We welcomed around 45 tourism businesses from across the Loch Lomond and Trossachs, Clackmannanshire, Falkirk and Stirling to share new developments and innovations.
We heard updates from regional partners and had the chance to speak with partners at Falkirk, Stirling and Clackmannanshire Councils, Discover Clackmannanshire and the Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park. Delegates also heard from three local businesses; Brucefield Estate in Forestmill, The Helix: Home of the Kelpies, and the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Museum at Stirling Castle.
On this page:
- Regional updates
- Event feedback survey
- Join the Forth Valley Facebook group
- Industry speakers details
Cost of Doing Business
The coming months will be very hard for the tourism and events industry due to rising costs and less disposable income for our customers. We have pulled together advice and guidance to help your business in the short term, and to allow you to build a more sustainable future. Along with our partners, we have a range of advice that could help your business.
As a result of the Sustainability Certification Scheme Fund, three sustainable certification programmes - Green Tourism, Green Key and EarthCheck are offering a £500 discount on their membership fees to those within the tourism industry looking to gain green certification. Find out more about the Green Certification Schemes.
Our Great Days Out campaign
This campaign, working with ASVA, Historic Environment Scotland (HES), and ScotRail promotes discounted tickets to inspire people explore the country on a day out or short break. Aimed at visitors attractions and outdoor operators, if you would like to submit an offer then take a look at our industry guide to get involved.
Our new business-to-business travel trade event, VisitScotland Connect, will bring together Scottish suppliers with international and UK buyers in 2023.
The workshop-style event, which will be held at P&J Live in Aberdeen on 19 and 20 April 2023, is now open for registration by trade-ready Scottish businesses.
VisitScotland Connect will replace Expo, our annual travel trade event. For us to deliver a quality event, we need a guaranteed number of businesses to participate. We're asking businesses to register interest by 25 November 2022 to secure a space.
If we don't get enough registered interest by this date we'll hold a virtual event instead, as we did successfully in 2020 and 2021.
Standard participation is £1,800+VAT. We're making it as affordable as possible by allowing businesses to pay in two instalments over two financial years.
For more information, please get in touch with us at [email protected]
We're halfway through our Digital Boost webinar series with Business Gateway with three sessions remaining covering analytics, search engine optimisation and blog content. Don't miss out, find out more and book your free place!
Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund (RTIF)
To date, a total of £18 million of grant funding has been awarded to 74 projects across rural Scotland, since the start of the Fund in 2018, to improve visitor facilities and access and to promote low-carbon transport options.
Managed by VisitScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government, the RTIF was created to improve the quality of the visitor experience in rural parts of Scotland that have faced pressure on their infrastructure due to an increase in visitor numbers.
The Trossachs Scenic viewpoints project in Stirling was awarded funding as part of round five and in round four the Doune Tourism Development Phase two in Stirling was also awarded funding. Read more about these projects.
- Stirling will become the first fully Augmented Reality (AR) city in the world following a ground-breaking project - find out more.
The Wallace Monument has had a really strong summer and this weekend are launching their first ever Santa experience which will be offered free of charge.
This summer saw an experiences campaign in partnership with TXGB and funded by VisitScotland that focused on showcasing bookable experiences available to visitors in Stirling. If you provide a bookable experience or would like to discuss creating one – please email Charlie Croft of Stirling Council.
Email: [email protected]
- Visit Falkirk ran a summer marketing campaign to promote the exciting range of cycling activities in the Falkirk area and the many places to visit and stay in the region. Find out more about the success of the campaign.
- Falkirk Council, in partnership with Stirling Council, Discover Clackmannanshire, Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, and Falkirk Delivers launched an innovative and inclusive campaign Access Forth Valley. Find out more.
- Energy Efficiency Fund: provides financial assistance to help businesses meet their net zero targets. The fund can provide up to 50% grant support (up to £10,000 per grant) to support local businesses make energy changes to business premises and operations.
- Business Resilience: grants of between £1,000 and £10,000 to help businesses meet their new business objectives. It can support plant, equipment and machinery expenditure (including IT), property expansion/improvements, exhibiting at a national trade show or the costs of developing innovative products or processes.
- Expert Help: up to three days free consultancy support from specialists in marketing, IT, digital media, finance, procurement, leadership and organisational development, innovation, exporting and more
- Digital Boost 1:1 support: Up to 21hrs of one to one support and online tools and tutorial.
- Business Clinics and HR support: Falkirk Business Clinics provide free access to specialist advice on topics such as legal, digital, procurement and funding. Plus free professional HR Advisory Service providing information, advice and support in a broad range of employment matters.
Falkirk Council - Marketing Assistant
Email: [email protected]
- Discover Clackmannanshire launched their marketing campaign, funded by the Destination & Sector Marketing Fund campaign which reached over 3.2 million people.
- We are starting the process for our tourism map for 2023 – a print of 15,000 maps are distributed locally and throughout the main travel routes in Scotland – there are opportunities to advertise in this from just £50. If interested please email Steven Campbell.
- The next quarterly meeting of Discover Clackmannanshire will be on the 24 November 2022. Sign up to attend - spaces are limited.
You can contact Steven via the Discover Clackmannanshire website.
Clackmannanshire Council - Team Leader Economic Development
Email: [email protected]
We are working with business owners within our Future Nature programme to encourage restoring nature. Find out how we are planning to become a Net Zero National Park by 2045.
Tourism businesses are being encouraged to support the transition to Net Zero. Take a look at the “Greener Business” toolkit to support businesses towards reducing emissions whilst saving on costs.
Sustainable Transport and Travel
A new National Park Journey Planner is being trialled to encourage use of more sustainable modes of transport including public transport and cycling. You can try it on this page or download the app to your phone via Apple Store or Google Play. Share it with your visitors to plan their visit.
The National Park will play host to the World Cycling Championship Road Races as part of the overall event in 2023. Find out more about this exciting opportunity that takes place on your doorstep, visit the World Cycling Championship website for more information.
Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park - Business Adviser - Tourism
Email: [email protected]
What did you think?
We’d be grateful if you could take a few moments to complete our online feedback survey. The event was designed to be useful for you, so please tell us about your experience and help us shape future events.
The Helix Park: Home of the Kelpies
It was great to meet and hear from Mandy Brown, new in post as the Team Leader at Helix Park. And another huge congratulations on "Best Visitor Attraction" at this years the regional Scottish Thistle Awards.
To get in touch with Mandy email [email protected].
The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regimental Museum
A few people managed to go along and take a look at the renovated museum. Harvey is keen to connecta dn collabraote with industry so please feel free to get in touch.
To get in touch with Harvey email [email protected].