Scottish Borders Council has put in place measures for the rest of this year that will allow funds to be allocated to organisers of significant events that attract people to the area.
Temporary arrangements have been agreed upon in recognition of the importance of the events sector to the region’s economy and the continued impact the COVID-19 pandemic is having.
This will see financial support available for events as follows:
- up to £2.5k to plan an entirely new event in 2021 or 2022
- up to £5k in 2021 to prepare to hold an existing event in 2022 where no event is held in 2021
- and up to £10k to hold an existing event in 2021
Funding will focus on addressing the challenges faced in planning and staging strategic events in the current climate, particularly the requirement for events to adapt and the associated financial costs incurred to meet COVID-19 guidelines.
Looking further forward, a new ten-year Strategic Events Plan to cover the period 2022-2032 will be presented to the Council later this year which will set out the Council’s plan to attract major events of national and international profile to the region.
Whilst reflecting the current state of the event sector following the effects of the COVID 19 pandemic, the plan will outline the Council’s approach to help support, develop, deliver and measure the impact of major events taking place in the Scottish Borders which significantly benefit the local economy.
It has been estimated that major events contribute over £7m to the region’s economy.
Councillor Mark Rowley, SBC’s Executive Member for Economic Regeneration and Finance, said: “The Council is acutely aware of how important the events industry is to our local economy. Events of all scales and sizes have the power to enrich our local communities and develop the region’s pull as a visitor destination.
“COVID-19 has hit the events sector particularly hard over the last year. There is however some light at the end of the tunnel, and as restrictions ease, event organisers can plan a way forward. As a Council, we will continue to engage with event organisers to ensure we support them in every way we can to allow them to react to the changing needs of the sector.
“As we look to the future, our Strategic Events Strategy will clearly outline a plan to help attract more events of this kind to the Borders and fulfil the region’s potential as a world-leading host for events of all kinds.”
Strategic event organisers can contact SBC’s Economic Development team for more information on funding support.