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Forestry Commission Scotland is looking for dynamic entrepreneurs to help run the new £4.5 million visitor services planned for Galloway Forest Park.
Expressions of interest are being sought to help manage the new tourism facilities which include a new visitor complex at Kirroughtree, a totally modernised centre at Clatteringshaws and an upgraded centre at Glentrool.
The whole multi-million investment is part of the Commission’s plan to grow the tourism market in the region. The new and refurbished visitor centres are all due to be up and running by the end of 2013.
The drive to pull in more visitors comes on the back of major tourism projects spearheaded by Forestry Commission Scotland, including the 7stanes mountain bike initiative and Dark Sky Park status.
Keith Muir, Forestry Commission Scotland’s tourism manager for Galloway said:
“A few years ago we recorded about 800,000 visitors were coming to Galloway Forest Park. Since then, the 7stanes biking project, new walking trails and the award of Dark Sky Park status have all boosted numbers. We are currently welcoming over one million visitors a year, making it a key visitor destination which has real potential for business development.
“We are very excited about the new investment plans coming to fruition as we have been working on them in the background for a number of years.
“We are looking for enthusiastic, dynamic businesses with a good understanding of tourism to join with us and really grow this market in Galloway Forest Park.
“There are great opportunities here for local businesses and the wider tourism sector and I recommend all of them get in touch to find out more.”
Galloway Forest Park was established in 1947 and is the UK’s largest Forest Park at over 97,000 hectares the equivalent to over 300 square miles. The area is ideally placed for more growth and there is a yet fully untapped market in the North of England, the central belt of Scotland and in Ireland.
Businesses wishing to express an interest and find out more details of the business opportunities on offer should log on to http://www.forestry.gov.uk/website/forestry.nsf/byunique/infd-8ubctd. All interested parties should register an interest by midday on 18th June 2012.
Notes to News editors
1. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government’s Environment & Forestry Directorate. www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland.
2. For events and recreation information log on to www.facebook.com/enjoyscotlandsforests. For Twitter: www.twitter.com/fcscotland.
3. Media enquiries to Steve Williams, Forestry Commission Scotland press office 0131 314 6508.