The television effect

By | Category: Travel destinations

Doune Castle

Last week it was announced that cricket would return to being shown on terrestrial television.  One of the reasons given was that by being on satellite television for the last umpteen years, interest I the game had diminished. The inference was that terrestrial television was important in order to gain increased awareness.

The importance of terrestrial television has long been recognised by the tourist industry as a way of attracting visitors to any locations that have been linked to a television programme or series.

Historic Environment Scotland has just release visitor figures to show that, despite this social media age, old fashioned television can pull the crowds in.

A number of Scottish sites have appeared in the Outlander series. Since no large promotions were underway during the time, something is responsible for increased visitor numbers and that something looks to be Outlander.

Blackness Castle

Blackness Castle – which features in the series as the stand in for Fort William – has seen the most significant rise in visitors, up 72% for the period 1st April to 25th June 2017.Doune Castle, famed for its role as the fictional Castle Leoch, recorded a 50% increase for the same period. Three other sites, Aberdour Castle, Linlithgow Palace and Glasgow Cathedral also saw much higher than normal visitor numbers each averaging visitor figures up by more than a third.

And when people visit they have a habit of buying souvenirs or food. Historic Environment Scotland says that retail income has risen by 62% at Doune Castle so far this year.

Because television series are repeated or shown around the world at different times and even years later it means that any laces that appear in television series or films have a visitor attraction pull that outdates the original screening times of the programmes.  As ratings increase, coach companies and tour operators will devise itineraries to visit these locations.

It just shows that destinations which invest in attracting series or films to be made in their areas gain a long term benefit.


Images © Historic Environment Scotland

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