AHEAD of the eleventh iconic Wickerman Festival taking place in South West Scotland this week, lucky delegates have been shown the famous bonfire statue being built and taught the tricks of the festival trade by the owner of the land which hosts the ANNUAL MUSIC event, Jamie Gilroy.
Diversifying into areas such as festival tourism has meant many landowners can continue to run their farms and estates as businesses even when faced with setbacks to their traditional land, use such as agriculture. The demonstration day, organised by Scottish Land & Estates, showed those interested in venturing into (REMOVE 'the' festival tourism (REMOVE 'trade') how it’s done using firsthand experience of those in the know.
Jamie Gilroy said:
“The Wickerman festival started in 2001 as A diversification in the year of foot and mouth. To permanently develop a RURAL SETTING will usually destroy THE NATURAL beauty which is so precious, so to smother the farm with thousands of people over A SINGLE weekend is a much more sensitive way to behave than to build another holiday park. In the first year we started with three stages and 52 acts. By 2011 that had become eleven stages and 250 acts!”
Ian Barr of Dumfries & Galloway Council gave a presentation to the 30 DELEGATES on how local authorities can help with knowledge and advice on many areas where one might wish to hold a festival and Catherine Erskine of the Cambo Estate provided a very interesting case study, showing how and why her estate has changed so much in the last few years by taking a picturesque garden and transformed it into a new world, where there are a number of festivals during the year all working alongside each other.
Leah Black talked about Spring Fling, the arts and crafts festival in Dumfries & Galloway which is in its tenth year and growing all the time. Leah and all of speakers spoke of the paramount importance of effective social media use – bringing in crowds through Facebook and Twitter THAT PROVIDE IMMEDIATE ENGAGEMENT WITH THEIR AUDIENCE.
Anyone wishing to find out more should contact Pat Somerville at Scottish Land & Estates on 0131 653 5400.
www.scottishlandandestates.co.uk/demodays plus wickerman festival site