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Visit Scotland | Alba
Article published 24/07/2023

Introduction from Regional Director Lynsey Eckford

Welcome to the April to June 2023 quarterly edition of our regional industry update for Loch Lomond, The Trossachs & Forth Valley (LLTFV) with an overview of some of the ways we’ve been promoting and supporting tourism in the area over the last few months.

Stirling Old Town Jail, Stirling Distillery, The Haggis Experience and Magna World were among 11 tourism businesses that represented Forth Valley at Scotland’s biggest business-to-business event for the travel trade, VisitScotland Connect, held at P&J Live in Aberdeen on 19 and 20 April.

While in Scotland, the international tour operators and travel agents also spent time travelling to sample in-person the scenery, hospitality, produce and attractions, through a series of "familiarisation" trips, which included a visit to Forth Valley.

My colleague Anne Massey and I were pleased to have the opportunity to attend the Discover Clackmannanshire AGM and update them on the latest visitor insights, our marketing activity and business support.

With the season almost in full swing, we are hearing encouraging signs from tourism and events businesses about the season ahead. We know that challenges certainly remain for you all, however as the schools break up for the summer holidays, the appetite for holidaying in Scotland is strong, from both the domestic and international markets.

lynsey eckford on site visit

Taken at Cromlix Hotel (left to right: Charlie Croft, Stirling Council, Emily Shields, Cromlix and Lynsey Eckford, VisitScotland)


One of the big tickets for this summer is the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships which are just around the corner. And they are coming to Forth Valley! Stirling will host the individual Road Time Trials, while the Men’s Elite Road Race will pass through Clackmannanshire and Falkirk when Forth Valley will be on the international cycling map.

Read on for more information on our activity to support tourism and events in Forth Valley, and promote the fantastic things to see, do and enjoy across the region

Recent UK press activity

Some of the activity from our Corporate PR team includes:

  • creating a recording featuring Regional Director Lynsey Eckford for commercial radio stations. Lynsey was discussing the prospects for tourism in the region for the summer
  • writing an opinion editorial from Lynsey Eckford which was published in the Stirling Observer, Falkirk Herald and Alloa and Hillfoots Advertiser
  • issuing a press release encouraging local businesses to enter the Scottish Thistle Awards which was featured in the Falkirk Herald
  • we issued a press release focusing on Forth Valley businesses attending VisitScotland Connect and familiarisation trip. This was picked up by the Stirling Observer and Alloa and Hillfoots Advertiser

visitscotland connect

Businesses attend VisitScotland Connect held in Aberdeen

To see all our media releases, visit our media centre

Global PR


The team supported a trip – in collaboration with a PR agency that works with Falkirk Council. The trip included visits to the Kelpies, Callender House and Park and the Falkirk Wheel. 

Coverage has appeared in the Telegraph with a reach of 675,000.

Falkirk news clip

North America and China PR

North America:

We had articles published online after working with Trazee Travel which targets the under-40 traveller. Trazee Travel is a network of journalists that update travelers daily with content focused on destinations, products, tips and events. Falkirk was included highlighting the Falkirk Wheel, The Antonine Wall, John Muir Way and Zetland Park for bike hire.


Stirling Castle was featured by which has a reach of  5,000. They published an article which showed Stirling Castle as one of the 7 must-see/visit destination in Scotland in both April 2023 and May 2023.  

newspaper clippings

Latest blogs on

Read and share our blogs, which are available on our consumer website Latest content featuring LLTFV includes:

And here's some updated pages on with regional content

Blogs on

The blogs webpage on

See all our blogs on

Update from the team at Stirling iCentre

The team at Stirling iCentre have been supporting the Bridgerton Ball which is being held in Stirling in July. They have put together an information pack which the 150/200 guests will come into the iCentre to collect.

Some of the iCentre team from Aberfoyle got together in the Stirling iCentre to allow them to reacquaint themselves with booking tickets. Stirling is a busy site for ticketing so the team were able to share their knowledge. 

Some of the team have been on familiarisation trips around the area, with a fairly new team it’s been great to get out and about together.

The iCentre have also seen an increase in footfall which is encouraging as the team continue to enjoy welcoming visitors to the area.

A positive review about the staff at Stirling iCentre

Review from a visitor to Stirling iCentre

Visit the iCentre to see some of the new suppliers: BidFood Ice Cream, Chunki Chilli, which are hand knitted organic cotton toys and puppets. Pachamama who make Fair Trade Hats, tea cosies and felted sheep all made in Nepal. Also Tilnar Art, FairTrade products, Glynart which is a collection of Sterling Silver jewellery.

Update from the team at Aberfoyle iCentre

Summer iCentre event 

The team are also working with the local Aberfoyle Community to help organise and host the villages’ first ever Book Festival in late August – look out for more details towards the end of the month.

Familiarisation trip

The team have enjoyed a couple of familiarisation trips recently to HES Doune Castle, The National Wallace Monument, The Old Town Jail in Stirling and a visit to the Church of the Holy Rude. As a new ticket supplier to the iCentre, the team wanted to get a better understanding of what visitors can see and experience at The National Wallace Monument in Stirling, so the team headed off for a visit to find out more.

If you are interested selling tickets to your event or attraction through the iCentres please do get in touch.

New retail

We’ve also got some fantastic new retail products - a great shopping experience for your visitors. Some of our new suppliers include Ann Crafted who have supplied us with delicious handmade jams, chutneys and marmalades made in Dollar.

Handmade artisan chocolate from Quirky Chocolate, Mac in a Sac waterproofs from Target Dry, original and rare breed sheepskin rugs from Richard Sexton and lovely kilt bags and purses from Teeny Tartans.

A member of the iCentre team standing at a viewing point at the top of the Wallace Monument with views of hills in the backgroundA member of the iCentre team on a familiarisation trip to The national Wallace Monument.

Social media stats: April – June 2023

208 million

No of times Loch Lomond, The Trossachs & Forth Valley (LLTFV) content reached people on social media


Number of engagements - reach, likes, comments, shares and saves of LLTFV posts


Reach for top performing post for LLTFV was an image of the National Wallace Monument, Stirling

Partnership marketing - the latest news

We’re talking about collaboration and it’s all about shared goals. By ensuring we have the right partners we can match the right product or experience to our activity. 

Recently the Kelpies were included in a partnership we worked on with Caledonian Sleeper and Glasgow Life. This was based on a campaign promoting the ease of travel from London to Glasgow (and beyond). It also highlighted summer breaks available through a mix of paid media and influencer activity.

We've been shaping up some exciting new partnership marketing campaigns. And, building on the success of some of our previous activity. 

Find out more about our latest partnership marketing activity.

The Kelpies

The Kelpies which feature in one of our latest campaigns

2023 UCI Cycling World Championships

The 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships will bring together 13 existing UCI World Championships into a new mega event in Glasgow and across Scotland from 3 to 13 August. It will see more than 8,000 cyclists and para-cyclists from over 120 countries taking part.

Did you know?

The Stirling area will stage the Individual Time Trials from Wednesday 9 August to Friday 11 August for all categories - Men Elite, Women Elite, U23 Men and Men and Women Juniors.

And Loch Lomond is the starting point for the Men Under 23 and Women Elite road races.

Handy resources for you and your visitors

  1. Want to know more? Visit the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championship website to read everything you need to know. There are dedicated pages to the region and is a really useful resource.
  2. We've pulled together a handy guide for the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships. Find out about the events happening across Scotland to keep your visitors "on track".
  3. Sign-up to the mailing list to get the inside track on everything 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships. They share news, updates, and exclusive content.

Watch and share | Stirling - host of the Road Time Trial!

Scotland's Year of Stories evaluation

Year of Stories

Photocall for Year of Stories

There were lots of regional Year of Stories activity such as "Stories from Japan and Beyond" at the Japanese Garden in Cowden and the Hippodrome Silent Film Festival in Bo'ness.

Find out more about the full impact of Scotland's Year of Stories 2022 with key insights, learnings and results.

Read the full evaluation

Future Themed Year

We asked for your help to scope out options for a future Themed Year. Our Themed Years celebrate the very best of Scotland and its people.

The survey is currently closed.

More details to follow.

Related links