Group doing the business at attracting trade to Kelso

From left, Border Cookwares Tina Newton, Cloud Nines Louise Stewart, Focal Points James Walker, Swan Shoes June Swan, Nikki Allman of Kelso Border Retreats, Kelso councillor Dean Weatherston and Sue Beck of Hendersyde Holiday Cottages celebrating Visit Kelsos latest success.
From left, Border Cookwares Tina Newton, Cloud Nines Louise Stewart, Focal Points James Walker, Swan Shoes June Swan, Nikki Allman of Kelso Border Retreats, Kelso councillor Dean Weatherston and Sue Beck of Hendersyde Holiday Cottages celebrating Visit Kelsos latest success.

A bid by businesses in Kelso to boost trade by joining forces to highlight the town’s attractions is set to go from strength to strength.

Visit Kelso, a voluntary group formed just over two years ago, has been awarded European Union and Scottish Government Leader funding to pay for the recruitment of a marketing officer for a year.

The aim of Visit Kelso is to promote the town, highlighting the diversity of what is on offer to both visitors and locals, using both a website populated with up-to-date events and members’ business profiles and continuous social media coverage.

It currently has a membership of more than 100 businesses, but that tally is on the increase.

One of its members, Luca Becatelli, landlord at the Cobbles pub in Kelso, said: “In 20 years of being in business in Kelso, this is the first time that opportunities are being explored, with the support of Visit Kelso.

“It really shows the benefits of all businesses working together to create success.

“Promoting events and the town in general highlights how busy Kelso is and creates a sense that Kelso is becoming a go-to destination.”

The new marketing officer’s role will build on the success achieved by Visit Kelso to date by continuing to develop engaging website content, enhancing social media coverage and signing up more businesses.

Borders Leader programme facilitator Simon Lynch said: “Kelso is already famed, among other things, for its abbey, fishing and racing, but many of the other enjoyable activities in the area aren’t as well known.

“This Leader-funded project seeks to raise the awareness of the many things to do in and around Kelso.

“This exciting project sees the business community of Kelso and the surrounding area coming together to offer visitors a more varied, interesting and joined-up experience.

“Leader is delighted to support such a development, and we look forward to seeing the benefits it brings to Kelso and the Borders.”

Kelso Border Retreats’ Nikki Allman added: “Being part of Visit Kelso is a wonderful opportunity for businesses within the town to promote themselves through our website and social media to attract visitors to the town.

“We have seen a real difference, and it is an exciting time ahead for Visit Kelso with the support of the Leader funding.”

For further details, email info@visitkelso.com or go to www.facebook.com/KelsoScottishBorders or www.visitkelso.com