On the 10th November Lisa, myself and some great friends from the tourism industry joined a large volunteer group for a clean up day on Scotland’s canals, here's what we got up to...

Since industry stopped using the canals in favor of rail transport the new value of the 200 mile network hasn’t always been recognized. Scotland’s canals are a vital source for economic impact from tourism & leisure, environmental improvements and great social benefits.

On WTM World Responsible Tourism Day we wanted to show our commitment to responsible and sustainable tourism in Scotland.

As a DMC we, along with the suppliers who joined us, are responsible for bringing thousands of individuals to Scotland each year, so it’s vital that we understand the impact this can have and the responsibility we have to Scottish countryside, the local communities and the environment.

Canal Volunteers
Canal Volunteers

After a quick lesson about the canal’s layout and the objectives of the day, we divided into teams and headed off for the spot on the canal that we’d been allocated. As you might know, I’m pregnant, so I took on a supervisory role during the day!

We cleared foliage from the sides of the canal, to stop it overgrowing into the canal water. Similarly, we cleared back the foliage on the tow-path so that it wouldn’t interrupt the travels of the many people who cycle, walk and run along the canal.

It was surprising how much we got done in a short period of time, however when Linton from British Waterways Scotland told us they had a backlog of work that would last 25 years we realized the vastness of the continuous work and the dedication of the volunteers!

We decided (as did some of our suppliers) that we’d be back again next year to help out and keep the Union Canal looking beautiful!


P.S. This will be my last green post for a while as I’m now on maternity leave. Lisa will be wearing the green blog hat for me whilst I’m gone!

A big thank you to:

Ronnie Bamberry (Kingsfield Events); Kerry McCabe & Bede McCabe (Winton House); Bryan Hogg (STGA Guide); Krystle Ste-Marie (Glasgow Marriott Hotel); and Louise Rattray (The Old Course Hotel).