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Visitor information grows roots in Ayrshire

Press Release   •   Mar 28, 2018 10:58 BST

Ballantrae Trust has worked in partnership with VisitScotland to provide information for visitors at Craigiemains Garden Centre.

VISITORS to South Ayrshire will be offered the ‘seeds’ to grow a fantastic holiday experience, following the announcement of a new partnership between Craigiemains Home and Garden Centre and VisitScotland.

The garden centre, which includes a café, shopping, Alfie the donkey, miniature railway and children’s play area, has now added to its offering by joining an impressive network of VisitScotland Information Partners (VIPs), committed to providing visitors with local information.

In partnership with the Ballantrae Trust (formerly the Ballantrae Development Group), a dedicated information point for visitors has been developed within the garden centre. Its location on the Ayrshire Coastal Path and quality facilities make it the ideal stop-off for visitors to South Ayrshire and the new official ‘iKnow Scotland’ accreditation will add value to the services already on offer and make it easier than ever before for visitors to connect with local businesses.

Craigiemains Home and Garden Centre joins a list of 90 businesses and visitor attractions across Ayrshire & Arran to sign up to the scheme. Launched in May 2016, the VIP programme harnesses the local knowledge, warmth and enthusiasm of partners across the country to help visitors receive the warmest of welcomes and make the most of their trip to Scotland.

Marie McCulloch from Craigiemains Home and Garden Centre said: “We’re delighted to join the VisitScotland Information Partner programme. We have worked closely with the Ballantrae Development Group and now the Trust to create an information point for locals and visitors within the garden centre. Our proximity to the Ayrshire Coastal Path and our proximity to the ferry terminals, means we welcome a number of visitors and we want to ensure that they experience the best that Ayrshire and Scotland as a whole has to offer.”

Andy McAlpine from Ballantrae Trust said: We are delighted to be working in partnership with Craigiemains to develop this focal point for visitors. It is a great opportunity to highlight the great visitor attraction that the centre is to visitors, and to encourage them to find out more about what’s happening within a radius of a couple of hours of the centre, and make the most of their visit to South Ayrshire and nearby Dumfries & Galloway.”

VisitScotland Regional Director Annique Armstrong said: “Craigiemains Home and Garden Centre is a fantastic addition to our network of VIPs. They have worked closely with the local community to ensure that visitors receive a high standard of customer service and sound local knowledge.

“The VIP programme celebrates and supports tourism businesses and local communities as they act as local ambassadors and help provide information, assistance and advice on all there is to see and do in the area. This follows a growing trend among consumers to use online resources to plan their trips and we now have partners throughout the country providing high quality information and advice to visitors with whom they interact.”

The programme forms part of VisitScotland’s focus on information which also includes a global online community to allow Scots and those who love Scotland to bring alive the streets, characters and landscapes of our country.

The scheme is open to a wide variety of businesses, as well as community groups, local authority-operated library services and social enterprises. VisitScotland provides the partner sites with official signage and collateral, promotional material and information resources to make sure visitors receive an excellent standard of information about the area and the rest of Scotland. For more information, visit

For more information on Craigiemains, visit:

For more information on Ballantrae, visit:

VisitScotland Regional Director Annique Armstrong (centre) is pictured with Marie McCulloch from Craigiemains Home and Garden Centre (left) and Andy McAlpine from Ballantrae Trust (right). 

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2018 Year of Young People

  • The Year of Young People 2018 will be the next of the Scottish Government’s series of themed years, following the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology 2017.
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