• Holly Lodge

CairnGorm Mountain Ltd go into Administration

Updated: Dec 3, 2018

This news header (BBC) shocked the Highlands community and Scotland as a whole, but one that was to anyone aware of the shocking mis-management of the company, not a great surprise.

There has already been a lot written (Parkswatch Scotland) about Highlands & Islands Enterprise (HIE homepage), their deal with Natural Retreats (Natural Retreats) and the general administrative clusterbomb that came of it all. Lots of debt, lots of infrastructure issues, lots of underhand activities and finally, a total collapse.

Unfortunately, the news runs the risk of a serious knock-on effect to the whole of the Cairngorm area as confidence drops and people who may be unsure of the current situation, stay away in droves.

It's worth remembering therefore, that the Cairngorms is bigger (ha) than just the mountains. Aviemore is a prime example of a refocus of investment and interest to step back from the original reliance on skiing which saw the area struggle in the late 80's and early 90's.

With so much to see and do in and around Aviemore and the wider Cairngorm area, (Visit Cairngorm Events) there is plenty of choice without any need to go near the mountains and if anything, this is precisely when we need to show our support for local businesses and employers by ensuring we continue to book holidays, visit attractions and venues and essentially, spend money.

Natural Retreats (Natural Retreats) employ around 70 people, but the 300,000 people who annually travel up the now broken Funicular were a source of significant income for the Cairngorm area. The scenario must be avoided of panic, where that 300,000 decide to stay away in 2019 as this will only result in job losses among local employers – from café owners to cleaners.

Tourism is the lifeblood of the Cairngorms and it’s a piece of Scottish beauty unrivalled anywhere else.

As long as we accept that no matter how loudly we might complain (Or not so loudly after the CM Ltd Facebook page was taken down), things like this do happen in business and it’s a case of how the involved bodies (HIE) react that matter.

They will be watched closely and judged harshly as to the outcome of this whole fiasco, but one thing is certain.

The Cairngorms has had worse in the past and survived to be bigger and stronger, and will do so again.

Show your support, visit the Cairngorms (Visit Cairngorms website), visit Aviemore (Visit Aviemore website)!

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