Spirit Of The Highlands & Islands Portal Big Hit At North Coast Visitor Centre
26th October 2022
The Spirit of the Highlands and Islands 360 degree immersive portal experience has been declared a ‘big hit' with visitors to the North Coast Visitor Centre this October school Holidays.
The Spirit of the Highlands and Islands project is a partnership project between The Highland Council and High Life Highland, and is delivered in collaboration with VisitScotland.
The Spirit of the Highlands and Islands project will encourage visitors to explore and experience the more remote and rural parts of the Highlands and Islands, as well as inspiring them to attend and support festivals and events, workshops, visitor attractions and outdoor locations across the area.
Chair of the Caithness Committee of The Highland Council, Cllr Ron Gunn, who came along to the North Coast Visitor Centre to experience the portal, said:
"I am a great believer in promoting tourism and introducing people to the delights of our area. Through the use of film, the portal transports you through a showcase of off-the-beaten track locations throughout the Highlands and Islands using impressive technology. It offers a unique platform to interact with visitors and communities on a new level allowing them to explore the vast elements and culture that our region have on offer. Having spoken with many visitors at the North Coast Visitor Centre today, it really has been a big hit here in Caithness."
High Life Highland Board member, Ken Nicol, said:
"The charity was delighted to host the immersive portal at the North Coast Visitor Centre during the October break, offering a different way to see and experience all that the Highlands and Islands have to offer. The immersive portal experience gives a taste of all that our area has to offer, encouraging everyone to find out more about the nature and culture of the entire Highlands and Islands area."
Richard McCarthy, Museum Assistant at the North Coast Visitor Centre said:
“We have welcomed lots of visitors over throughout the October holidays, with many children returning multiple times to visit the immersive portal. The experience has universal appeal with visitors recounting memories of places they have visited and families experiencing the joy of wildlife and snowstorms in the slower paced film. Everyone has been suitably impressed and we look forward to having the portal back here next year.”
The Spirit of the Highlands and Islands project is part of the Inverness Castle project which is supported by the Inverness and Highland City Region Deal, a joint initiative supported by up to £315m investment from the UK and Scottish governments, The Highland Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and University of the Highlands and Islands, aimed at stimulating sustainable regional economic growth.
The Spirit of the Highlands and Islands is supported by a grant from the Natural and Cultural Heritage Fund (NCHF) led by NatureScot and funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Reflecting the Spirit of the Highlands and Islands theme, it will encourage people to visit all parts of the Highlands and Islands in a sustainable way.
Cllr Ron Gunn joins staff member Richard McCarthy and members of the public to enjoy the experience of the portal
High Life Highland's Countryside Ranger's gave members of the public an exciting opportunity to ‘dive in' to the world of marine wildlife at the North Coast Visitor Centre recently. The ‘Whale and Dolphin Watching’ presentation took place on Wednesday 15th November at 11am, and was well attended by the local Caithness community.
The North Coast Visitor Centre in Thurso has achieved a four star award by VisitScotland's quality assurance scheme in its first year of operation. Set in the former Thurso Town Hall and Carnegie Library, the visitor centre includes a museum featuring Caithness history, in addition to an art gallery, a shop and cafe.
The re-launch of the former Caithness Horizons centre in Thurso is set to take place on Tuesday, 2 November 2021, with the facility being rebranded as the North Coast Visitor Centre. Its relaunch will bring back into use a valuable community asset and support the wider community and economic benefit for Thurso and the wider Caithness Area.
Talks have taken place on the possibility of reopening Thurso's Caithness Horizons which closed last week due to financial problems. The operators of the museum and art gallery said increasing running costs and reduced income had made the running of the site "unsustainable".
Uncertainty over funding from Highland council. Caithness Horizons, which tells the story of the county of Caithness from 416 million years ago to the present day, has deleted its manager post and cut its curator's hours from 40 to 20 hours a week in anticipation of funding cuts.
Week Commencing 1st January 2018. Energy & business services: 2018 promises to be another year of exciting change in the energy sector, and to highlight how things have progressed in the north the Beatrice Offshore Windfarm team have produced a short booklet outlining the significant milestones that have been achieved during 2017 - you can access the booklet at https://www.beatricewind.com/single-post/2017/12/22/lookingbackat2017 .
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Tuesday 11th August saw local group No Limits Caithness visit the Museum for a morning packed with Viking activities with Curator Joanne Howdle, or Thordis Eiríksdóttir as she is fondly known to local groups and schools. The group helped the Museum to hit the half million visitors mark and to celebrate they were presented with a special cake made in the Museum's cafe.
Scientists from around the world recently gathered in Thurso for an annual biological sciences meeting. The Larwood Symposium was hosted by the Environmental Research Institute (ERI) of the North Highland College UHI on behalf of the International Bryozoology Association.
Caithness Horizons Museum in Thurso has recently been reviewed by Visit Scotland grading authority and are delighted to keep its Five Star Visitor Attraction status for a seventh year running. The news comes shortly after receiving a Certificate Of Excellence from Trip Advisor earlier in the month.