As the first series of Outlander is released on DVD and blu-ray, Scottish locations associated with the hit television show are reporting a surge in visitor numbers.
The ‘Outlander effect’ has seen National Trust for Scotland (NTS) locations that either inspired author Diana Gabaldon’s books or were used as backdrops to the series enjoy big increases in day visits compared to 2014.
Outlander filming locations, such as Doune Castle near Stirling and Culross in Fife, are among the places being promoted in VisitScotland’s new publication, Set in Scotland: A Film Fan’s Odyssey, which was released this week.
NTS has reported the following increase in day visits (September 2014 to September 2015, compared to the previous 12-month period):
• Falkland – the Fife village which portrays 1940s Inverness in the first episode: 12% up
• Preston Mill – the doocot in East Lothian which features as a backdrop in several scenes: 26% up
• Culross – the Fife village used as the fictional village of Cranesmuir: 9% up
• Culloden – the historic Highlands battlefield which plays a key role in the books: 19% up
Meanwhile, Historic Scotland has already reported a 44 per cent surge in summer visitor numbers at Doune Castle, which has a starring role as Castle Leoch, while Blackness Castle in West Lothian, which stands in for the stronghold of Fort William, has seen a 31 per cent rise.
Anna Rathband, Filming Manager at National Trust for Scotland, said:
“Outlander is an excellent example of how film tourism has benefited the Trust and the properties that either inspired the story or were used as backdrops have all seen an increase in visitors compared to last year. We worked closely with Sony to produce a digital guide to our properties that have Outlander connections and we hope this will continue to encourage visitors to explore the real places behind the series.”
Stephen Duncan, Director of Commercial and Tourism at Scotland’s new public heritage body, Historic Environment Scotland, said:
“2015 has seen a record-breaking summer season for many of our fantastic heritage attractions and the ‘Outlander effect’ has certainly played a part, particularly at Doune Castle following its starring role as Castle Leoch in the TV series.
“Over the summer, Doune reported three back-to-back record breaking months and an overall surge of 44 per cent in visitors, whilst Blackness Castle, which stood in for the stronghold of Fort William, saw a 31 per cent rise. Other sites featured in filming have also seen increased footfall, and the response from the general public on our digital channels has been phenomenal – showcasing how Scotland’s history continues to enthral and engage people from around the world in new and different ways.”
Mike Cantlay, Chairman of VisitScotland, said: “These impressive figures show just what an impact the television series has had on these stunning locations as fans look to discover the land that inspired Outlander.
“The release of the DVD and blu-ray will showcase Outlander, and its amazing scenery, to an even wider audience, which will be more good news for locations around Scotland.”
The first series of Outlander, which is produced by Sony PicturesTelevision and shown in the UK on Amazon Prime, is available to own on DVD and blu-ray now.
To find out more about Scottish locations associated with Outlander, go to www.visitscotland.com/outlander
Notes to Editors
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- VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
- The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
- This will be supported by seven overarching strategies:
- Marketing: we will market Scotland and its outstanding assets to visitors from all parts of the world, including the promotion of Scotland to people living in Scotland to visit different parts of the country
- Events: we will support the national events strategy and its delivery, and sustain, develop and promote Scotland’s international profile as one of the world’s foremost events destinations
- Internationalisation and International Engagement: we will utilise all our platforms to enable Scottish-based tourism businesses to better understand international opportunities and market to a global audience and we will work within One Scotland Partnerships to optimise the potential of Scotland’s Diaspora and our strategic partners at regional, European and global levels
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- The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
- According to a recent Deloitte study, the tourism economy supports 270,000 jobs in Scotland in 20,000 diverse businesses. The same study calculates that the tourism economy contributes £11 billion annually (direct and indirect impact, including day visits) and supports around 10 per cent of employment in Scotland. Almost 16 million tourists take overnight trips to Scotland.
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Year of Food and Drink 2015
- 2015 is the Year of Food and Drink, a celebration of Scotland’s natural larder and the role that food and drink plays in shaping our economic success.
- Scotland generates over £2.5m per day through food and drink tourism.
- A series of themed months will create an appetite for key areas of Scotland’s food and drink industries – from seafood and whisky to berries and high-quality meat
- For more information, visit www.visitscotland.com/tastescotland