Island Makers launched!

The Island Makers has been established in a response to the worrying and uncertain times that we all find ourselves in. We are a collective of over 25 talented artists and makers who are all based on the Isle of Scilly. Our aim is to support those within and outside of our community – We all feel very vulnerable.

Through this website platform, we hope to not only sell a wonderful collection of artisan gifts, artwork and homewares but keep in touch and offer support to each other, include things of interest to those who love the islands, and even throw in the occasional creative challenge.

Head here for their website – www.theislandmakers.com

 

 

The Isles of Scilly takes home double gold in the latest South West Tourism Awards

Tanglewood Kitchen for Tourism Innovation and Longstone Lodge & Cafe for New Tourism Business.
This annual event received more than 800 entries across the whole of the South West from Wiltshire and Dorset in the east, to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in the west, and from Devon in the south to Somerset, Bristol, Bath and Gloucestershire in the north.
Huge achievement and many congratulations to our two remarkable tourism businesses.

https://www.southwesttourismawards.org.uk/winners

IP launches special double cover Guide for 2020

New Guide for the Isles of Scilly highlights exceptional natural beauty and wellbeing,
and features a Special Edition double cover for 2020

The Islands’ Partnership, the destination management organisation for the Isles of Scilly, is delighted to reveal its official Islands Guide for 2020. The much anticipated 124-page annual brochure is already available to read online and download, while printed copies will be available next week.

Once again, the 2020 Guide, which was designed and produced by Wolf Rock Marketing, has a high quality feel with stunning photography and engaging editorial from the likes of food writer and Sustainability Sessions founder, Melissa Hemsley, Man Booker-nominated author Wyl Menmuir and TV presenter, Sarah Beeney. For the first time ever, there will also be two cover designs of the Isles of Scilly 2020 Guide – a day and night version of a textured line-drawn pattern by talented illustrator Nick Hayes depicting elements of Scilly’s landmarks and experiences.

This year, one of the themes for the Guide is our Stargazing on Scilly, focusing on our incredible dark, unpolluted and sparkly night skies.  It also takes a closer look at Scilly’s Hidden History – how this tiny archipelago has evolved over the last 9,000 years, while Scilly’s resident ornithologist Will Wagstaff and seal expert Dr Robert Lambert encourage us to the islands for a closer look at our wonderful birdlife and Atlantic grey seal population, and Melissa Hemsley unearths some of the Scilly’s foodie goodness and exceptional dining experiences.

In addition, the 2020 Guide interviews two extended families who have been coming to the islands with their children, and now grandchildren, for holidays since they can remember, and offers ideas for top weekend getaways from the city, themed breaks happening in the spring and autumn such as writers’ retreats, guitar breaks, and yoga breaks; and all the right reasons to get married or celebrate a special occasion on the islands. 

The Guide also includes the usual island highlights – including the spirit of each of the inhabited islands and suggestions on what to do and where to go when visiting. There are also details on how to get to Scilly, including the new helicopter service starting in March 2020 in addition to the passenger ferry and Skybus options, how to get around once you’ve arrived, as well as more than 40 pages of accommodation options.

“The Isles of Scilly Guide is widely regarded as one of best destination guides in the country which is something we’re incredibly proud of and naturally keen to see continue,” says Nick Bond, Islands’ Partnership Executive Director. “Every year we strive to produce a Guide that does Scilly justice and to showcase its incredible beauty, authenticity and cultural identity. With another original and distinctive cover this year, indeed the choice of covers, coupled with its inspiring content and compelling reasons to visit, I’m sure that the 2020 Guide will be another huge success.”

Printed copies of the 2020 Guide can be ordered via visitislesofscilly.com/home/get-our-guide, or it can be read/ downloaded on ISSUU.

New look to the IP team

Some of you will know that Nick Bond arrived in September as the IP’s new executive director. What you may not know is that Amanda Bond, his wife, is also a tourism marketing professional, and she joined the Islands’ Partnership last month as Head of Marketing. Jaclyn Pearson has also joined the IP leading membership and business engagement across the islands. Welcome to all!

In the photo, from left to right: Jaclyn Pearson, Nick Bond, Amanda Bond, Annie Lethbridge (IP Administrator) and Jeremy Brown (Creative Islands).

Winner of Isles of Scilly Photo Competition 2019 announced

A photo depicting Richard Pearce’s art studio on Bryher has scooped this year’s top prize in the annual Isles of Scilly Photography Competition, which is organised annually by the Islands’ Partnership. Kathryn Watson, a Metropolitan Police officer from Cambridge took the photo, entitled “An Artist’s Studio”, whilst on holiday with her wife and in-laws during the Creative Scilly festival in May this year.

Kathryn’s photo was selected as the outright winner from 35 shortlisted photos from across eight categories after she polled more than 1,000 votes on the Visit Isles of Scilly Instagram feed (@visitislesofscilly). In fact, Kathryn had no less than five photos shortlisted in this year’s competition, so a very worthy winner. She wins a three-night break for two on Tresco Island and two return flights with Penzance Helicopters, the new travel service to Scilly which starts up in March 2020.

A passionate amateur photographer, this year was the first time Kathryn had brought her wife to the islands. “I wanted her to discover this amazing archipelago so close to Cornwall that hold very fond memories for me,” she says. “Living in Cornwall as a child, we used to visit Scilly often, staying on St Mary’s and island hopping to all the others. I remember the freedom – being allowed to wander off on our bikes and being left to our own devices. These days, I find the islands instantly relaxing and totally stress-free.

“The islands are also perfect for budding photographers,” she continues. “I rarely get the time to take experimental photos these days due to my busy work schedule, but when I was on Scilly earlier this year, I enjoyed getting up at 4.30am, and getting out. Being on the islands for Creative Scilly was also perfect timing as I loved all the street performances and artists’ workshops. It was fantastic to bring together the favourite elements of my holiday in one image, and even better that it helped me win the competition!”

This year’s Visit Isles of Scilly photography competition, which has run every year since 2014, saw more than 700 entries across 8 categories: #MyScilly, Dark Skies, Dine the Isles, Everyday Magic, Instaworthy, Scilly Creatives, Scilly Events and Wild Scilly.

“The Isles of Scilly Photography Competition is now a firm fixture in the islands’ calendar which draws a lot of enthusiasm and excitement from visitors, and islanders, keen to showcase their photographic talent,” says Nick Bond, Executive Director of the Islands’ Partnership. “The quality of the entries this year was second to none and we’re delighted that so many will find their way into our existing photographic library and also feature in our marketing materials throughout 2020. Kathryn’s photo, together with a number of the shortlisted finalists, will also feature in the forthcoming 2020 Isles of Scilly Guide.”

The Islands’ Partnership would like to thank Tresco Island and Penzance Helicopters for providing the fantastic prize for the competition.

Scilly success at this year’s Cornwall Tourism Awards

The Isles of Scilly scooped three gongs at last week’s dazzling Cornwall Tourism Awards which, for the second year running, took place in the stunning Truro Cathedral.

Tanglewood Kitchen won Gold in the Tourism Innovation of the Year category for its Tanglewood Table – an intimate dining experience for eight people set in the Old Sorting Office on St Mary’s – and Longstone Lodge & Café also won Gold in the New Tourism Business of the Year for its new style hostel accommodation and café. Karma St. Martin’s took a Bronze Award in the hotly-contested Small Hotel of the Year category.

This year, 77 awards were given out across 27 different categories – with standards once again taking a step up. The awards celebration was enhanced by a hilarious presentation from Cornish comedian Johnny Cowling who, together with host and BBC presenter Daphne Skinnard, at one point had all 320 guests on their feet singing karaoke!

“It is a real joy to see Scilly’s business excel at the Cornwall Tourism Awards – the standards are high, and getting higher all the time, and our leading businesses on the islands have to compete very hard to deliver a fantastic tourist offering,” says Nick Bond, Executive Director of the Islands’ Partnership (the Destination Management Organisation for the Isles of Scilly) which is instrumental in encouraging its member businesses to take part. “All our winners should be congratulated on their success, especially in a destination as competitive as Cornwall, and we hope that more of Scilly’s accommodation providers, attractions and experiences are encouraged to enter next year and beyond. It was a great night – not just for the islands – and a superb way to wrap up the 2019 season.”

The successful finalists from Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly will be fast-tracked into matching categories in the South West Tourism Excellence Awards in February 2020 and possibly invited to represent Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in the National VisitEngland Awards in April 2020.

The full list of finalists, as well as the film taken on the night can be found on the Cornwall Tourism Awards website. https://www.cornwalltourismawards.org.uk/

Internationally-acclaimed Arts Organisation, Invisible Flock, selected to scope ideas for permanent installation on the islands

Award-winning arts organisation, Invisible Flock, has been appointed by Creative Islands, the Arts Council funded project for the Isles of Scilly led by the Islands’ Partnership, to take up a week-long residency on Monday 7th October to develop proposals for a permanent installation for the islands.

Focusing on energy, the environment and new technologies, Invisible Flock’s Technical Director Ben Eaton (second from left in the photo) will use his time on Scilly to familiarise himself with the islands and engage with residents, visitors and the islands’ local artists through community workshops, lectures, and activities at the Five Islands School. In particular, Ben will seek to explore Scilly’s amazing and unique natural environment and wildlife, the Smart Energy solutions and new technologies already emerging across the islands.

“Invisible Flock creates highly sensory installations and environments, with our practice rooted in questioning the world in which we live and looking to nature as something that is infinitely bigger and worth preserving,” says Ben. “The focus of the project on Scilly gives us a fantastic opportunity to open up dialogue with those living, working and visiting the islands to help us explore alternative ways of approaching creative solutions and long-lasting change. It is something we are very passionate about.”

“We are delighted that Invisible Flock has been selected to take an artist’s residency on the islands,” says Nick Bond, Islands’ Partnership Executive Director. “Their catalogue of creative work and installations is incredibly powerful and their themes and practices resonate brilliantly with what our islands stand for: protecting and keeping special the spectacular environment in which we live, yet recognising that we have to adapt to change and challenge ourselves to do this innovatively, positively and with forethought. We look forward to seeing their proposals for an installation on Scilly following Ben’s visit here next week.”

This third artist’s residency appointment follows last autumn’s residencies with renowned artists, Luke Jerram and Gordon Young, each of whom are now developing detailed proposals for artworks for the islands in collaboration with local community groups and artists. It is anticipated that Invisible Flock will deliver its proposals in December for a permanent installation to the Creative Islands.

Three Scilly businesses amongst finalists at Cornwall Tourism Awards 2019

The shortlisted finalists in the Cornwall Tourism Awards 2019/2020 have been announced and once again, the Isles of Scilly will be well represented at this year’s ceremony taking place at Truro Cathedral in Cornwall on Thursday 7th November.

This year, three Scilly businesses will be honoured with either Gold, Silver or Bronze Awards. They are:

  • Karma St. Martin’s – in the Small Hotel of the Year category
  • Longstone Lodge & Café in the New Tourism Business of the Year
  • Tanglewood Table (at Tanglewood Kitchen) in the Tourism Innovation Award.

Karma Hotel has been a finalist in the Cornwall Tourism Awards for four consecutive years in the Dog Friendly category and last year was also Highly Commended in the Small Hotel category. Longstone Café also received a Highly Commended last year, whilst this is Tanglewood’s first foray into the Cornwall Tourism Awards, despite many Taste of the West accolades.

The Islands’ Partnership remains instrumental in encouraging its member businesses to take part in the Awards, and in assisting those businesses who came forward to write their bids. All businesses who submit applications benefit from receiving the judges’ reports and recommendations following the extensive three-stage judging process.

“We’re delighted for all the businesses on Scilly who have been named finalists at this year’s Cornwall Tourism Awards,” says Nick Bond, Executive Director, Islands’ Partnership. “The judging gets ever tougher as record numbers enter the awards and the changing criteria means that businesses have to be ever more conscious of the communities and environment in which they operate, as well as delivering excellent visitor experiences, so it is very pleasing that Scilly remains competitive with the rest of Cornwall. We wish all our finalists the very best of luck on the 7th November.”

Successful businesses in the Cornwall Awards will be fast-tracked into the South West Tourism Excellence Awards in February 2020 and possibly invited to represent Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly in the 2020 National VisitEngland Awards.

 

Nick Bond appointed as IP’s new Executive Director

The Islands’ Partnership is delighted to announce the appointment of Nick Bond as its new Executive Director.  

The appointment comes at a time when the Islands’ Partnership can also announce a new three-year strategic partnership with Penzance Helicopters, alongside Isles of Scilly Steamship Group, Tresco Estate and the Duchy of Cornwall, all of whom have renewed their commitment to the Islands’ Partnership for a further three years.

Nick, who takes up his role on 9th September, was previously Head of Tourism at Visit Norwich for six and a half years (2011-2018) before taking time out to care for his father. Prior to that, he was Business Tourism Manager at Welcome to Yorkshire.

During his time at Visit Norwich, Nick was instrumental in leading the destination management strategy including the company’s extensive marketing programme and membership / private sector engagement, and in securing £1 million in investment for the destination. During his tenure, those employed either directly or indirectly by the tourism sector doubled to 12,000, whilst the tourism economy itself grew to more than £700 million.

Andrew Sells, Chairman of the Islands’ Partnership commented: “We are delighted that Nick will be joining the Islands’ Partnership in September.  He has a great deal of experience and expert knowledge of the travel industry and will, I am sure, be an excellent asset to the Islands’ Partnership and to the Isles of Scilly as whole.  The board looks forward to welcoming Nick and his family to the islands.

“Nick’s appointment comes at an exciting time for the Islands’ Partnership,” Andrew continues. “I am delighted to announce that Penzance Helicopters has agreed to become one of our new strategic partners, alongside Tresco Estate, the Isles of Scilly Steamship Company and the Duchy of Cornwall.  The Islands’ Partnership has secured funding from all partners for the next three years.”  As part of the renewals process, Tresco Estate and Isles of Scilly Steamship Group announced, respectively, that Nick Halliday, Chief Executive Officer, and Sharon Sandercock, ISSG Marketing & Communications Manager, will be their representatives on the Islands’ Partnership board of directors.

“I am thrilled to be joining the Islands’ Partnership and my family are really excited to be moving to the Isles of Scilly,” says Nick (Bond).  “I love the outdoors and photography, as well as enjoying good food with friends.  I also have a keen interest in geography and history so, for me, the Isles of Scilly are a dream destination!  I am looking forward to getting to know the islands really well, and those who live and work here, and to help the Islands’ Partnership continue its great work in growing Scilly’s visitor economy.”

Nick will be joined by wife Amanda (also a tourism professional), and two daughters – Alexa 9 and Stella 3.