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Article published 26/10/2022

Introduction from Cheryl Chapman, Development Manager

The return of domestic and international visitors to our region over the summer months has been welcome and heartening. Some of our iconic events such as Orkney Folk Festival, Orkney International Science Festival and the agricultural shows saw record crowds.  

As we approach the autumn and winter season, we will continue to work with partners in our tourism and events industry on promoting activity that extends the season and ensures Scotland - and Orkney - remain front of mind for potential visitors.  

We’re prioritising activities that will stimulate demand across our isles and new bookings for the industry to support its long-term recovery, with more details in the update below.  

We know that many businesses are facing difficult decisions and are having to consider how they adapt their operations to manage the cost challenges. We would encourage you to visit our industry website for all the latest industry advice, support and guidance and we will bring you news on industry events taking place in the region.   

We also want to take the opportunity to celebrate our tourism and events industry who have worked tirelessly in the past two years. The return of the Highlands & Islands Tourism Awards in November and the newly inaugurated Orkney Tourism Awards offers us the chance to do this and I would like to wish all those shortlisted the very best of luck. 

Islands Programme Funding for Orkney

In September it was announced that six island local authorities will receive a share of £4.45 million to assist critical projects on climate change, population retention and tourism, as part of the Islands Programme.

£1.5 million of this funding was allocated to New Kirkwall Nursery. This project will build a new nursery facility located next to Orkney College campus, to replace an existing building earmarked for demolition and which is the only current nursery facility in Orkney. 

The new-build facility will save approximately 20 tonnes of CO2 in moving the nursery service from the old 1960 CLASP building to the new highly insulated building.

Find out more. 

Consumer PR

Our Consumer PR team work closely with publications across the globe to share all that Scotland has to offer.

Here's a few examples of Orkney coverage secured during July - September:

Regional Marketing activity

  • New UNESCO Marketing Campaign

    Scotland’s UNESCO Trail is being promoted with the launch of a dedicated VisitScotland marketing campaign.  The campaign, aimed at potential visitors from the UK & Ireland, Germany and France, will encourage them to discover more about the country’s 13 place-based designations included in the trail. Heart of Neolithic Orkney is one of the 13 designations included in the Trail.

  • Scotland is Calling

    As part of our Scotland is Calling activity, we've launched the latest phase of our Expedia partnership marketing campaign.

    The campaign is running across both the UK and US (via Expedia and markets with the aim of boosting bookings through autumn / winter and into spring 2023. 

    Orkney featured in all of our activity for the US market.

  • Your Story Awaits

    As part of the Destination Marketing Fund, Orkney was awarded funding which led to the Your Story Awaits campaign, which ended in August 2022. Due to the success of the campaign, this has now been extended by Orkney Island's Council and will run into early spring 2023. 

    This campaign has been developed to drive awareness for the Orkney Islands as a 2022 Spring holidaydestination whilst delivering significant increase to website traffic.

    In the initial phase of marketing activity, the campaign attracted 175,000 new users to, and generated 587,000 page views. 

    Campaign content included:

    • Two new films
    • Brand new content for Sky 
    • Working with two Scottish travel influencers: Susanna Arbuckle of Adventures Around Scotland and Brian Miller Walker.

Scotland's Year of Stories 2022

Celebrating Scotland's rich and diverse oral storytelling heritage

In September, Map of Stories was announced as a unique celebration of Scotland's rich and diverse oral storytelling hertitage as part of Scotland's Year of Stories 2022. Supported by EventScotland, a series of live 'film ceilidh' performances have been planned as well as the launch of a brand new, interactive website. One of the five regional 'film ceilidh' events will take place on Sunday 30 October at Stromness Town Hall. The event in October will be led by Orcadian storyteller Tom Muir, with live music accompaniment. 

Learn more about the new Map of Stories project.

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