Tourism boost as town fills up for the Games

editorial image

Milngavie is facing a Commonwealth Games tourism bonanza - with the town booked solid months before the event begins.

There are now no B&B or campsite places left in Milngavie during the sporting spectacular.

However, as the town looks forward to an influx of visitors, West Highland Way walkers could lose out as the accommodation squeeze is felt as far as Drymen - which is also booked solid.

Louise Macfarlane, manager of Milngavie Tourist Information Centre, welcomed the news, saying it would be a boost to the local economy.

However, she admitted the Games will have a knock-on effect on walkers doing the West Highland Way, which starts in Milngavie and goes through Drymen.

She said: “We are certainly looking forward to the boost this will bring to businesses in the area and I’m sure all the new visitors to Milngavie and beyond will get a warm Scottish welcome from everyone here.

“With the West Highland Way on our doorstep people are attracted here from across the world so we are more than used to seeing people from different cultures.

“Although the lack of accommodation will have a knock-on effect for those wanting to do the Way, we hope these people will plan accordingly to avoid the busy time.”

Gilbert McVean, who runs the West Highland Way bag transfer service Travel-lite said: “The end of July is one of the busiest times. I don’t think people will be inconvenienced too much because walkers coming from outside Scotland tend to book their accommodation in advance. I think we will see a surge in the volume of walkers doing the walk either side of The Games.”

And Allan Bell, owner of Bankell Farm Caravan and Camping site just north of Milngavie on Strathblane Road, said: “We are fully booked-up over the Commonwealth Games week. We have been since Christmas. We have even had to open another area for camping.

Because of demand for spaces at the campsite, Mr Bell, who has run the campsite since 1986, has had to put up his prices by £2 to cover the additional toilet facilities.

The Commonwealth Games runs from July 23 until August 3.