SNP MSP Joan McAlpine is calling on local groups in Dumfries and Galloway to apply to the Scottish Government’s new Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund.
The Scottish Government announced the new £6m fund in response to the tourism boom across rural Scotland, and the money will be invested over the course of two years (2018/19 and 2019/20) to help ensure the services and facilities tourists and communities need are provided.
The new fund will support a wide range of improvement projects – such as parking, camping facilities, recycling points and footpath access, in areas such as the North Coast 500 route as well as at Historic Environment Scotland sites.
Commenting, SNP MSP Joan McAlpine said:
“The tourist industry is vital to the Dumfries and Galloway economy, which attracts visitors from all over the world each year.
“The new £6m Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund will help cater to the very welcome increasing tourist numbers in Dumfries and Galloway and help alleviate pressure on transport, services and facilities. This support for infrastructure will enable even more people to enjoy this most beautiful country in the world and is an example of the SNP Scottish Government listening to and responding to the needs of rural Scotland.
“Local groups in Dumfries and Galloway that would like to bid for this funding can get in touch with me if they need any advice.”
The latest figures for the 12 months to the end of March 2017 show there was a 3% annual increase in overseas visits to Scotland and a 9% increase in overseas tourism expenditure.
The new fund is expected to launch in early 2018 and will be administered by public sector partners working with local authorities, with input from communities and the industry to identify projects requiring support.
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