SIR, - A number of weeks ago, it was reported in the local press that visitor numbers to the Scottish Borders fell nearly five per cent last year.
I had a look at the Visit Scottish Borders website this week and was surprised to see they haven’t got any events listed for 2012, although it is ‘coming soon’. When I enquired why no events for 2012 were on the website, the tourist office stated they were ‘waiting for people to get in touch with event details’.
Surely as Visit Scottish Borders are promoting our area, should they not be the ones gathering information to list on their website. By using a search engine, it is very simple to find details and dates of a number of events next year, such as the common ridings, rugby sevens, the book and walking festivals.
By comparison, if you were to look at Visit Northumberland website, they have events listed as far in front as 2017, and Dumfries and Galloway also have their events page for next year up and running.
Recent VisitScotland figures showed for the first half of 2011, domestic visits were up by six per cent to Scotland, ahead of any other part of the UK. Domestic visits accounts for 84 per cent of all trips to Scotland and it appears we are well placed to tap into the growing staycation market, so why are Visit Scottish Borders not selling our area? We should be trying to capitalise on this growth in visitor numbers.
The 2012 events page on the Visit Scottish Borders website should have been up and running months ago. Anyone wishing to visit the area to look ahead to what might be on in the area would be very disappointed, and may have booked elsewhere. The events listed for this month are also very unbelievably limited, surely there must be happening in the Borders this December?