New AITC leadership announced at AGM

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Argyll and the Isles Tourism Co-operative’s annual general meeting last month saw a change of leadership.

Loch Melfort Hotel’s Calum Ross relinquished his his post as chairman and Iain Jurgensen stepped up from his vice-chairman’s role to take over the top job. Iain will be joined by Daniel MacIntyre, who fills the vice-chairman’s position.

Iain thanked Calum for his leadership over the past year saying: ‘We recognise the enormous contribution Calum makes both in and for Argyll as well as at national and UK level in pursuit of the best conditions for economic growth in the tourism sector.

‘We would also wish him great success as he joins the HIE board. I am very pleased he has agreed to continue with us as a co-opted director.

‘I am delighted and privileged to take on the post of chairman at this most exciting of times with the Heart and Soul Campaign in full swing and building upon the Wild About Argyll campaign success. We are in a great place to grow the tourism offering and brand awareness to our markets.

‘There are challenges as well as opportunities and, of course, we will be working hard to make the case for a permanent solution to the Rest and Be Thankful to ensure Argyll is open for business as a year-round tourist destination.

‘Over the past year we have grown the skills on the board through co-opting Daniel MacIntyre, who recently took over The View in Oban, and Virginia Sumsion from Food from Argyll. And we welcome two newly-elected directors – Neil MacKay from Oban and Lorn Tourism Alliance and Donna Chisholm from Visit Bute.’

Iain added: ‘I am delighted to welcome Daniel to the role of vice-chairman. Dan has been heavily involved in our new website and the Heart and Soul campaign and champions our digital agenda.’

AITC now looks ahead to a very busy few months, with the innovative Heart and Soul campaign with Glasgow Life and key travel partners running through to March 2019. It will shortly share the findings of the ambitious West Coast Marine Tourism Collaboration, which has been progressed
with several other DMOs from Lewis to Arran and is scoping out new product development opportunities to progress in readiness for 2020 the Year of Coasts and Water.

After the AGM, AITC hosted a networking event with the Scottish Destination Management Association sharing all that’s new across the region and seeking to significantly increase the amount of business undertaken in Argyll and the Isles.

On November 6, AITC is jointly hosting an events and festivals workshop with EventScotland for event providers across Argyll which is seeking to encourage much more collaboration in the planning, delivery and promotion of events.

Over the coming months the AITC development team will be focusing considerable energy on product development and planning for 2020 the Year of Coasts and Water.

The full AITC board comprises: Neil MacKay, Oban and Lorn Tourism Alliance; Gavin Dick, Cowal Marketing Group; Victoria Winters, Heart of Argyll Tourism Alliance; Niall Macalister Hall, Explore Kintyre and Gigha; Fiona McPhail, Kyles Marketing Group; Donna Chisholm, Visit Bute; Cathy Craig, Entrepreneurial Scotland; Iain Jurgensen, Portavadie, Loch Fyne;  Andy Roger, Cameron House, Loch Lomond; Daniel MacIntyre, Little Bay Trading; Virginia Sumsion, Food from Argyll; Calum Ross, Loch Melfort Hotel; and the Duchess of Argyll.

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