A former Chief Executive of Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Charlotte Wright, has been appointed to the board of Highland Tourism Community Interest Company (HTCIC), and a full-time Community and Business Development Manager has also been added to the organisation’s team.
The announcements came at HTCIC’s latest Ambassador Summit (27th January) held at the Drumossie Hotel, Inverness, where over 30 tourism ambassadors, who represent a wide range of tourism businesses and communities from across the Highland region, were meeting.
Charlotte Wright has joined the board as Company Secretary with a particular focus on establishing a strong public sector partnership and a strategic plan that supports the ambitions of HTCIC.
Ms Wright said:
“Tourism is such a significant sector for the region.
“I am delighted to be part of Highland Tourism and the vehicle they have created for dynamic strategic partnership.”
Also announced at the HTCIC summit was new ambassador, Ben Thorburn, Head of Marketing for the active and experiential, eco-tour operator Wilderness Scotland, with a specific role of joining the Highland brand and marketing committee to help steer the roll-out of the premium environmental brand Highland.
Mr Thorburn said:
“We have watched with interest the development of Highland Tourism CIC, their vision and mission to develop and position the Highlands as a high value, sustainable destination is highly aligned with our Wilderness Scotland brand.
“The work they have done to get to this stage is really impressive and it’s a pleasure to be adding my enthusiasm and personal passion for the Highlands as an ambassador.”
Erin McCue is a further addition to the organisation, becoming a full-time member of staff as Community and Business Development Manager.
Mrs McCue said:
“I am delighted to be joining the team at Highland Tourism CIC at such a pivotal time for the organisation.
“I look forward to seeing the momentum continue with the renewables sector, which is of huge importance to not only the Highlands but globally, and to ultimately be involved in the creation of a marketing strategy for the Highlands that our Ambassadors, communities, businesses, and our partners all play a role in developing – resulting in the region being recognised as a world leading premium environmental tourism brand.”
There is now an army of over 100 ambassadors working with HTCIC, and its board comprises leading tourism businesses in the region such as Cabot Highlands and Nevis Range.
It is bolstered by a growing number of communities with the most recent addition being the Wester Ross Biosphere (WRB).
Natasha Hutchison, General Manager, Wester Ross UNESCO Biosphere said:
“HTCIC’s world-leading sustainable vision gives communities a fresh new ambition and platform to showcase our visitor offer and we at WRB are particularly looking forward to collaborating with HTCIC on this innovative and inclusive approach.”
Discussions were also held at the Ambassador Summit about the Launch of Brand Highlands, Developing a Marketing Campaign – Escape to the Highlands; and ambassadors welcomed an important presentation on Working Towards NetZero by Keith Masson, Head of Net Zero at HIE.
Yvonne Crook, Chair of Highland Tourism CIC said:
“I want to welcome Charlotte, Ben and Erin to our team.
“In their respective roles they will bring considerable expertise and experience, helping us to continue our growth and fulfil our plans. HTCIC is rooted in the community and the ambassadors all have a real passion for the Highlands, realising the full potential of the region as a community, destination and brand.
“We are attracting international interest and attention from international tourism organisations for the innovative approach we are taking to working in partnership with the renewables sector and now in discussion with the whisky sector through founding sponsors Tomatin Distillery.”
Willie Cameron, HTCIC Director said:
“Very strong foundations, relationships and partnerships have now been formed.
“We are really seeing an inspiring new vision coming to fruition for Highland Tourism and I would urge all those who would like to be a part of it to be get in touch.”