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Article published 31/05/2023

New Regional Director appointed - Lynsey Eckford

We have appointed a new Regional Director for Ayrshire, Arran and Forth Valley. Lynsey Eckford has stepped into the role, which will see her work with stakeholders and partners to find ways to support the growth of the visitor economy across these areas. 

We spoke to Lynsey to hear how she's settling in. Find out about how she wants to engage with communities throughout the regions and read about some of the tourism development highlights in the pipeline.

Lynsey Eckford

Lynsey Eckford, Regional Director

Lynsey's tourism career so far

It's been almost 20 years since Lynsey began her career in tourism and hospitality. Her journey started with a role at a local hotel, where she was lucky enough to learn from hardworking and passionate colleagues who inspired her to pursue this field as a career.  

After a decade of working in the industry, Lynsey joined our Quality Assurance team, which allowed her to visit, connect and learn from a diverse range of businesses, ranging from welcoming bed and breakfasts to restaurants sourcing high-quality local produce and unique and authentic visitor experiences. 

Find out more about Quality Assurance

Robert Burns Birthplace museum

The Robert Burns Birthplace museum tourist attraction is a 5 stars visitor attraction quality assurance and has a Gold Green Tourism certification

Before becoming VisitScotland's Regional Director for Ayrshire and Arran & Forth Valley, I served as an Industry Relationship Manager for Glasgow. Additionally, I was delighted to be part of the team at Forth Valley College last year, where I lectured for the 21/22 academic year. This experience allowed me to share my passion for the industry and encourage others to consider tourism and hospitality as career choices.

Lynsey Eckford, Regional Director

Resilience in the industry

Lynsey said that the last few years have been transformative for everyone. And as she starts in this new role she is excited to work with and support the community and tourism industry as we move forward towards recovery.

Lynsey also commented that since 2020, tourism businesses across the country have navigated several hurdles and faced a lot of uncertainty. Although some of these challenges are not behind us, she knows from her time in her previous roles that the tourism industry is resilient and innovative.

One of our most important roles is to support you and your business and we do this in many ways. We can help you achieve growth and improve quality across every point of the customer journey.

Find out more about our business support

Business support

Business support is available for tourism businesses from our regional teams

Responsible tourism

With the return of travel, there is a serious focus on how the tourism industry can thrive responsibly and sustainably now and in the future. We are working with several partners to promote responsible tourism, while encouraging and supporting its development within the industry. 

Lynsey is passionate about responsible tourism, especially how it can be used to protect this area’s scenery and landmarks for future generations while boosting the local economy.

She looks forward to working with stakeholders to facilitate community led tourism, as we continue to help visitors make responsible choices whilst here.

Read about our Destination Climate Action Plan

Looking ahead

Finally, Lynsey is thrilled to be a part of the VisitScotland team working across Forth Valley and Ayrshire and is really look forward to working with the local industry and communities to continue these successes.

Join our Ayrshire & Arran business Facebook group or Forth Valley business Facebook group to keep up-to-date with the latest regional news and share yours too.


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