South Scotland MSP, Emma Harper, has pledged her support for the upcoming St. Ayles Skiffie World Championships. The championships, to be held from the 7-13th of July 2019, will take place on Loch Ryan at Stranraer.
Ms Harper has been in dialogue with the Stranraer St Ayles Skiff Project, who working in partnership with Stranraer Water Sports Association and Stranraer Rotary have been selected by the Scottish Coastal Rowing Association to host the event, as well as highlighting the area the event aims to contribute to the wider economy of Stranraer.
Ahead of the championships, Ms Harper has written to the Scottish Government in order to assist the event organisers in seeking potential funding opportunities.
Commenting, Ms Harper said:
“It is great to see the championships come to the town I grew up in and I look forward to supporting, and attending the event, in any way I can. The championships will contribute to the local economy in South West and we are already starting to see hotels, B&B’s and guest houses fill up, and I am informed that many local restaurants are beginning to take bookings.
“I have recently met with representatives from the Stranraer St Ayles Skiff Project who have asked me to write to the Scottish Government in order to ask for support with organising the event – both in terms of finances and press.
“I, again, would also like to take the opportunity to congratulate and thank the Stranraer St Ayles Skiff Project on being selected to host the championships, and for all their continued hard work in making the event possible.”
Wendi Cuffe, Project Manager of the St. Ayles Skiff Project, added:
“We’re all very excited about the event – it’s a great thing for the town and gives it a real boost. Hot on the heels of the Oyster Festival, it’s fantastic to have yet another big event coming to the town. It really helps put Stranraer on the map.
“The event will bring with it a huge number of competitors – we’re looking at around 70-75 clubs coming to the championships who will bring around 25-30 competitors each. That’s around 2,000 competitors, which doesn’t take into account their friends and family members.
“With the masses of fans and competitors coming to Stranraer we’re going to turn Agnew Park into a Skiffs championship ‘fan zone’ with lots of activities going on including marquees and music.
“We look forward to showcasing Stranraer and what we have to offer, particularly our natural assets such as the loch. It’s the ideal location to host all types of national and international water-based events, it doesn’t have to be coastal rowing.”