Applecross has been very quiet throughout the season in terms of problematic behaviour, casual camping and littering. Applecross Bay was free of tents for the majority of the year, and campervans were present, but not in huge numbers. All measures put in place to accommodate the significant increase in visitors have been more than adequate in 2022.
Brighter face of tourism project
Progress is slowly being made on the Brighter Face of Tourism project which comprises visitor information signage, a beach clean campaign, dog waste composting, and a visitor website. This is being managed and implemented by the Tourism Group and is funding by Coastal Communities Fund and The Applecross Trust.
There are plans to organise some volunteer maintenance days alongside The Applecross Trust and Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland. In the first instance, The Applecross Trust has commissioned a survey of the Kenmore Path which will determine repair works that need to be done. Some of the work will be carried out by the Applecross Trust staff, and some in conjunction with a group of volunteers, keen mountain bikers wanting to give something back to the landscape.
Wildlife Estates Scotland
An application has been submitted to the Wildlife Estates Scotland initiative. The scheme aims to promote best practice in wildlife and habitat management, to build information on species and their habitats, and to monitor progress and improvement.
Channel 4 documentary
Channel 4 will be running a documentary about life on the NC500, which includes Applecross. The documentary is called Britain’s Most Beautiful Road. The team met with the Applecross Trust to gain information for filming, permissions, and to ensure they were fully informed and that a fair and well-balanced picture was presented.
Hartfield House Hostel
Hartfield House Hostel remains open until 18 December. It has been an extraordinary year. Bookings have been very healthy and the majority of the customers were northern European rather than domestic. Due to the tourism measures put in place over the last two years in Applecross, the ranger scheme, and the hostel’s growing reputation as a green business, the nature of visitors has changed. Most people staying at the hostel were exploring the area, interested in the outdoors, the wildlife, undertaking activities, and were conscientious in their behaviour. This is a significant positive shift when comparing with the previous few years.
Over the winter months, major capital works will take place, developing a wing of the building into staff accommodation, insulating all of the customer rooms, painting, and installing new showers in the Bunkhouse.