Buyers attending Northern England’s biggest business tourism industry trade show will be transported 134 miles north of the border by VisitScotland with the help of virtual reality, in a bid to attract more business tourism to Scotland.

The national tourism organisation’s Business Events team will give attendees at the Conference and Hospitality Show in Leeds today (4 April) the chance to experience some of Scotland’s most exciting destinations and landscapes via its immersive virtual reality app, ScotlandVR.

The app, which was released by VisitScotland earlier this year, features 360˚ imagery and footage and visitors to the Scotland stand will be able to view it in Stereoscopic 3D through the use of a Google Cardboard virtual reality headset.

As part of the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, some of the Scottish partners attending have links to Scotland’s rich past including Edinburgh and Stirling Castles, National Museums of Scotland and Royal College of Surgeons.

The Conference and Hospitality Show, now in its eighth year, is expected to be attended by more than 800 buyers, including top event organisers from across the UK.

Theresa Ring, Market Manager – The Midlands & North England at VisitScotland, said: “Scotland’s history and heritage is what defines the country for many visitors. It’s an integral and iconic part of our national ‘brand’ as well as a major contributor to our economy. Scotland’s heritage is a major driver for event planners looking for a uniquely authentic setting, which is also home to world-class contemporary facilities for meetings and incentives.

“The Conference and Hospitality Show is an important platform to promote Scotland to key UK buyers and the North of England is a growing market for us, accounting for nearly 40% of total UK enquiries in 2016/17.”

Gordon Hodge, Head of Conferencing and Events at the University of Strathclyde, said: “We’re delighted to be attending the Conference & Hospitality Show with VisitScotland Business Events for the first time, to showcase the dedicated conferencing facilities in our flagship Technology and Innovation Centre (TIC).

“Since opening in March 2015, TIC has challenged the market’s perception of academic venues, and quickly established itself as one of Scotland’s premier conference centres. TIC’s versatile auditoria, conference rooms and foyer spaces can accommodate conferences of up to 450 delegates, offering in-house catering and the very latest in projection, display and audio technology.”


The Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology begins on 1 January 2017 and will end on 31 December 2017. It will build on the momentum generated by previous themed years in Scotland including the 2015 Year of Food and Drink, Homecoming Scotland 2014, the Year of Creative and the Year of Natural.

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