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'Outstanding' VisitScotland PR team best in the UK

Press Release   •   Jun 07, 2017 13:29 BST

The public relations team at VisitScotland is celebrating this morning after being named the best in the UK.

The national tourism organisation scooped the prize for Outstanding In-House Public Relations Team at the prestigious CIPR Excellence Awards 2017 in London after demonstrating “terrific strategic alignment with the brand and reputation objectives of the organisation”.

At a glittering ceremony at The Artillery Garden at the HAC (Honourable Artillery Company), VisitScotland beat strong competition in the form of the British Heart Foundation, The Financial Times, Irwin Mitchell, People’s Postcode Lottery and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

As well as VisitScotland’s hugely successful Spirit of Scotland campaign, and its accompanying social media drive which has so far seen more than 300,000 uses of the #ScotSpirit hashtag, CIPR judges were also impressed by the organisation’s work on the Borders Railway launch, its Ambassadog project, its promotion of film tourism; the launch of the Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design 2016 and the promotion of Scotland VR – its first virtual reality app.

The judges said: “The extent of staff engagement in developing the Spirit of Scotland campaign and the advocacy of the team and wider staff was particularly impressive. They are continually looking to innovate and not rest on their laurels, despite having produced a really successful and imaginative campaign. They are challenging themselves to develop it even further using social media and influencers to showcase Scotland worldwide and a product they are demonstrably passionate about.”

Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said: “This is an absolutely outstanding achievement and is fitting recognition for the hard work our PR team has put in over the past year. They have demonstrated huge dedication and passion in promoting the work of our organisation and Scotland as a whole and I would like to congratulate everyone involved in this superb win.”

To see the full list of winners, go to

Notes to Editors

  • Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
  • 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:
    1. 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
    2. 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
    3. 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
    4. Customer Experience: we will provide information and inspiration to visitors both locally and globally via their preferred medium of choice
    5. Quality and Sustainability: we will provide support and advice to businesses, with the goal of improving the quality and sustainability of the tourism sector in Scotland. We will provide quality assurance to visitors through our Quality Schemes
    6. Inclusive Tourism: we will strive to make tourism in Scotland inclusive and available to all
    7. Working in Partnership: we will listen to and work with the industry, partners and communities to shape our offering and support
  • To ensure everyone can safely enjoy Scotland’s amazing countryside and landscapes, VisitScotland encourages all visitors to fully respect their surroundings by behaving in a responsible and appropriate way.
  • VisitScotland works together with tourism businesses to make tourism a success for everyone and ensure the industry continues to grow.
  • The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
  • Spending by tourists in Scotland generates around £12 billion of economic activity in the wider Scottish supply chain and contributes around £6 billion to Scottish GDP (in basic prices). This represents about 5% of total Scottish GDP
  • The Scottish Government is the Managing Authority for the European Structural Funds 2014-20 Programme. For further information visit or follow @scotgovESIF
  • For VisitScotland’s press releases go to, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to
  • Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
  • 2017 Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology
  • 2017 is the year to delve into the past and discover Scotland’s fascinating stories through a wide-ranging variety of new and existing activity to drive the nation’s tourism and events sector, boosting tourism across Scotland.
  • The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology begins on 1 January 2017 and will end on 31 December 2017. It will build on the momentum generated by previous themed years in Scotland including the 2015 Year of Food and Drink, Homecoming Scotland 2014, the Year of Creative and the Year of Natural.
  • The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology is a Scottish Government initiative being led by VisitScotland, and supported by a variety of partners including Creative Scotland, Scottish Tourism Alliance, Scottish Enterprise, The National Trust for Scotland, Historic Environment Scotland, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Built Environment Forum Scotland, Heritage Lottery Fund, Museums Galleries Scotland and Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland.
  • The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology is supported by £570,000 of Scottish Government funding.
  • The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology events fund is managed by EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate.
  • For more information visit or join the conversation at #HHA2017