The Isles of Scilly is set to benefit from major new investment into its cultural tourism offer after a successful bid by the Islands’ Partnership to Arts Council England’s national Cultural Destinations fund.
The £164k project will be led by the Islands’ Partnership working alongside a local consortium of the islands’ artistic and cultural communities, including the museum and library.
The two-year project, which is set to commence in April, aims to bring to life Scilly’s rich and distinctive cultural heritage offer to attract new visitors to the islands.
It will see the development of a range of new visitor experiences including discovery trails, events and cultural short break packages. These will be supported by additional marketing and informed by consumer research to help identify new audiences.
The trails will utilise new digital technology, exploiting the opportunities provided by the islands’ superfast and 4G connectivity to provide visitors with new and immersive experiences. The project will help to stimulate new business growth and provide a much-needed boost to the islands’ visitor economy.
James Berresford, chairman of the Islands’ Partnership, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been successful in our bid to the Cultural Destinations fund. The Isles of Scilly are already one of England’s most distinctive destinations.
“This project will provide a fantastic opportunity to build on this and harness the enormous potential of the islands’ cultural heritage, bringing our untold stories to life and helping to attract new visitors.”
David Jackson, executive director of the Islands’ Partnership, added: “Our Cultural Destinations project will bring the islands’ tourism industry and cultural community together to create new and compelling visitor experiences and provide a much-needed boost to the islands’ vital visitor economy.
“It’s an incredibly exciting opportunity that enables the islands to exploit new technology and to demonstrate innovation despite our remote location.”
Phil Gibby, area director, south west, Arts Council England, said: “This is a fantastic result for the Isles of Scilly’s cultural, destination and tourism organisations. The investment will help position culture as a significant part of the visitor offer, helping to drive growth of the visitor economy and allowing more people to experience arts and culture.”