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Visit Scotland | Alba
Article published 15/05/2023

Martin Breslin, Regional Partnerships Executive

Welcome to our latest regional update, where we look back at highlight activity for the first quarter of 2023 between January and March. As we head into the start of our traditional tourism season, we can reflect on some strong successes and look ahead to clear opportunities in the coming months. 

It was fantastic to be able to celebrate the hard work, passion and commitment within tourism and events at the National Final of the Scottish Thistle Awards in February. Scottish Tourism Month in March gave us the chance to celebrate our achievements and for the industry to come together at events throughout the region to share learnings, best practice, and ideas for future collaboration.

Glasgow is once again celebrating a year as European Capital of Sport in 2023 – the first city to win the title twice – and the countdown is now very much on for the UCI Cycling World Championships taking place in Glasgow and across Scotland in August. We're all about to be at the centre of a global festival of cycling.

Look out for our new Scotland. Made for cycling marketing, plus the industry toolkit designed to help businesses make the most of this golden opportunity and grow our cycling tourism for the years to come.


Martin Breslin, Regional Partnership Executive

Martin Breslin, Regional Partnerships Executive

Meet Craig – your new Industry Relationship Manager

We welcome to the team Craig Lawless, our new Industry Relationship Manager for Glasgow, East Renfrewshire, and Renfrewshire & Inverclyde. Craig has been working as the Industry Relationship Manager for Ayrshire & Arran and has a wealth of experience within the role.

Craig is the main point of contact for tourism businesses across the region and is on hand to provide bespoke advice and support on how you can grow and develop your tourism business.

If you'd like to get in contact with Craig please email:

Craig Lawless, Industry Relationship Manager

Craig Lawless, Industry Relationship Manager

Marketing Glasgow City Region

  • Refreshed regional destination page

    As part of our newly re-launched consumer website, we've updated and refreshed our suite of destination pages. Check out our new look destination page for Greater Glasgow & The Clyde Valley which is full of inspiring information on what to see and do and where to stay across the region.

  • New Glasgow City Region content on

    Check out new content added to featuring Glasgow City Region:

  • Glasgow – the easy travel option from Germany, France, and Spain 

    Glasgow was featured as an easy travel connection for visitors from Germany, France, and Spain in a partnership with tour operator Holiday Pirates. Targeting warm audiences through Holiday Pirate's channels, promotion included social media posts, newsletters, app pushes and deals driving people to a dedicated page on its website.

  • Targeting visitors with Exeter Airport

    Promotion of direct flights from Exeter Airport to Glasgow featured as part of our Scotland is Calling activity. The 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships, Glasgow's music scene and museums all featured within a bespoke Scotland is Calling newsletter sent from Exeter Airport to over 21,000 contacts in February. The newsletter led with a stunning image of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.  

Glasgow part of Scotland’s UNESCO Trail

Profiling Glasgow’s dynamic credentials as UNESCO City of Music has been a key feature in the Scotland’s UNESCO Trail. A range of activity highlighting Glasgow’s designation, across key markets, particularly in Germany, includes:

  • An eye-catching, thumb-stopping social media post featuring Glasgow’s music scene and messaging around Glasgow as the UNESCO City of Music, generated 94,000 impressions and over 700 link clicks.
  • A digital advert on German website Süddeutsche Zeitung, part of a content partnership, featured Glasgow UNESCO City of Music as part of Scotland’s UNESCO Trail promotion. This contributed to 1.2 million impressions, over 5,000 clicks, and more than 4,000 page views.
  • Activity with Skyscanner promoting direct flights to Glasgow and the creation of a dedicated page with route information and inspiration about the city. This activity ran from February until March and targeted the German market.

Glasgow City Region on social (January – March)

1.94 million reach

Number of times Greater Glasgow content reached people on social media

+94,000 engagements

Reactions, likes, comments, shares and saves of Greater Glasgow posts

Reach of +451,000

Top performing post by reach was a stunning shot of the Glasgow City Chambers staircase on Facebook

The power of PR

COP26 scoops Scottish Thistle Award

Glasgow’s Scottish Event Campus scooped the award for Best Business Event at the National Finals in February for its delivery of the COP26 conference in November 2021.

The Scottish Thistle Awards National Final is the highest accolade in the Scottish hospitality, tourism, and events sector.  Once Upon a Whisky and Glasgow Life’s Celtic Connections festival were both shortlisted at the West Regional Finals in November.

SEC at the Thistle Awards 2023

Pictured: Presenter Jennifer Reoch, Susan O’Donnell, Kerry McNally and Dawn Lauder from the SEC with our Head of Business Events Neil Brownlee and JJ Chalmers. Image credit Chris Watt.


Hello from our Glasgow iCentre

The first quarter of the year was a really positive one for Glasgow iCentre, with footfall showing continued growth post-COVID and our retail sales in particular have been positive.

We've got a wide selection of Shop Local products, and one of our popular products from local supplier Crochet by Esther, is her handmade sheep that we have featured in our window. 

It's been a busy period renewing ticketing agreements and we're delighted to start working with Mharsanta and Van Winkle to sell their food and drink experiences.

Opening hours

Our new opening hours for the Glasgow iCentre are:

  • Monday to Saturday, 9.30am to 5pm 
  • Sunday from 10am to 5pm

As always, if you're in Glasgow City Centre please pop in and say hello to our iCentre team – they'd all love to hear from you.

people sitting around a table at the Glasgow iCentre

Visitors in Glasgow iCentre

Scotland. Made for Cycling

Filming and photography at Kelvin Aqueduct, Cathkin Braes, Bell’s Bridge, and footage from the Indoor Track Cycling Championships at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome features in our latest campaign Scotland. Made for Cycling.

Featuring heavily throughout campaign activity, the city helps to create a compelling proposition to underpin the focus on Scotland as a leading cycling tourism destination, in the run-up to and beyond the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships.

These Glasgow cycling experiences also feature within our spring cycling campaign activity, which included both broadcast video on demand (ITVX, STV Player, Sky including My 5 and All 4) and paid social media activity.

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