Organisers of Stranraer Oyster Festival have issued a warning to members of the public to be cautious of scammers after their Facebook page experienced a surge in suspicious activity.
The warning came as the community-run festival announced that one of its celebrity chef demonstration events had sold out. Within minutes of the announcement, the social media page was inundated with comments from individuals claiming to have tickets to re-sell.
Romano Petrucci, Chair of Stranraer Development Trust, the community organisation that organises Stranraer Oyster Festival, said:
“We know that popular events and festivals can be targeted by scammers, so we took immediate action to remove all these suspicious comments and we issued a warning to people not to respond to them.
“We have invested a great deal of time and effort in finding a ticketing partner that offers exceptional security and great customer service. We are delighted to be working with Scottish ticketing experts Citizen Ticket to manage tickets for this year’s festival.
“Our number one priority is the safety, security and enjoyment of visitors to the oyster festival. We are seeing record demand for tickets this year, with events now starting to sell out much earlier than ever before. We are urging all visitors to only buy direct from our online ticket system, from Gateway to Galloway or from local retailers.
“We fully expect there to be a few tickets that are returned to us, for genuine reasons, and where tickets become available, we will offer them at the door over the festival weekend. I would like to thank everyone for their unprecedented support for Stranraer Oyster Festival, and we look forward to welcoming you to Stranraer next month.”
Stranraer Oyster Festival takes place from 15-17th September, and it celebrates the wild oysters of Loch Ryan, Scotland’s last remaining native oyster fishery.
The festival programme includes demonstrations from celebrity chefs Michael Caines, Tony Singh, Felicity Cloake and Julie Lin, evening aerobatic pyrotechnic displays, live music, the Scottish Shucking Championships and much more. The cookery demonstration by Michael Caines has sold out, but visitors to the festival can still secure tickets for the interactive ‘An Audience with Michael Caines’ events.
First launched in 2017 by Stranraer Development Trust to promote the area as a tourism destination, the festival has had a huge impact on Stranraer’s economy, and its identity. The festival is supported through Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Major Events Strategic Fund and Coastal Benefit Fund, and EventScotland’s National Events Funding Programme. The work of Stranraer Development Trust is also supported by Kilgallioch Community Fund and South of Scotland Enterprise.
General admission tickets cost £6 per day or £12 for the full three-day event for over 12s, with concessions available. Additional charges apply for selected chef demonstrations.
Tickets for Stranraer Oyster Festival 2023 can be purchased online from www.stranraeroysterfestival.com or in-person from the Gateway to Galloway hub and at Central Café.