Yesterday’s piece in Insider reported visitor numbers at Edinburgh Castle and the National Museum of Scotland exceeding 2 million in 2017 while the Scottish National Gallery, Loch Lomond Shores, Glasgow’s Riverside Museum, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum and St. Giles’ Cathedral passed 1 million visitors.
Industry experts at Glasgow Caledonian University attributed some of the increase to the lower value of the Pound against the Euro and the Dollar and while this is no doubt true, the report failed to mention other factors such as the Outlander Effect and the perceived safety of Scotland by comparison with London and European cities which have suffered terrorist attacks in recent times. That there is a uniquely Scottish dimension to this can be seen in the different levels of increase in Scotland and the rest of the UK.
The weak pound has been attributed with responsibility for an 18% growth in UK tourism spending while in Scotland foreign spending surged by 27% on last year. We must assume the difference is due to other factors some of which I may have identified in: