Skye residents have made their voices heard on island issues, caused by increased tourism.
The first phase of a major survey on tourism and its impacts on Skye had over 250 responses when it was conducted throughout March and April.
In the online survey, Skye residents were asked what they believe are the main issues facing the island as a result of the increase in tourism. 30% of respondents highlighted dangerous driving as the major issue but most respondents focussed on a lack of infrastructure – lack of Toilets (18%), poor Roads (14%), Parking (7%) and lack of Public Transport (2%).
Only 3% of respondents felt there were too many tourists with 1% citing “Moaning Incomers” as the main issue facing Skye.
The year-long project has been commissioned by the Destination Management Organisation (DMO) for Skye and neighbouring areas, SkyeConnect, a membership organisation open to all businesses with an interest in tourism and the economy of Skye.
The research is being carried out by the Moffat Centre – the tourism market research consultancy which is part of Glasgow Caledonian University.
When asked what could be done to improve some of the issues, many residents suggested ring fencing Council Tax, introducing an accommodation tax or a road toll to invest in infrastructure, roads, toilets, public transport, parking and waste facilities.
To tackle the issue of dangerous driving residents suggested increased road signage, stickers on hire car windows and information in hire car documentation.
The results of the residents survey, along with the visitor survey work taking place throughout the year, will feed in to the work of the Skye Tourism Taskforce, which was set up in 2018 to inform the Scottish Government and Public Agencies about the actions required to ensure the sustainable development of an effective tourism industry on Skye and Raasay. The Taskforce aims to identify and develop infrastructure projects that will mitigate some of the pressures created by a buoyant tourism industry.