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Homecoming 2014

– in the Scottish Parliament on 7th November 2013.

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Photo of James Dornan James Dornan Scottish National Party

5. To ask the Scottish Government whether it will provide an update on the 2014 year of homecoming. (S4O-02556)

Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

Planning for homecoming is progressing well and the year-long programme of events planned across the country will celebrate the very best of Scotland’s food and drink, our assets as a country of natural beauty and our rich creativity and cultural and ancestral heritage.

Photo of James Dornan James Dornan Scottish National Party

The minister will have noted that recently Scotland was named one of the best places to visit next year by the Lonely Planet guide. I am currently working with local organisations to see what we can do to highlight all that the south side of Glasgow has to offer tourists and residents in the run-up to the Commonwealth games and beyond.

Does the minister agree that the 2014 year of homecoming offers a unique opportunity for tourists and locals to learn more about the oft-forgotten gems on their doorstep?

Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party

Yes, I do. I was delighted that Lonely Planet judged Scotland to be one of the top three places in the world to visit, along with Brazil and Antarctica—a mixed bag there, Presiding Officer.

I agree entirely that the year of homecoming is an excellent opportunity for people throughout Scotland to celebrate our many attractions. I am delighted that there are funded or partner events planned for all local authority areas and that the homecoming Scotland 2014 programme currently includes 241 events.

In 2014, Scotland will be on the world stage as never before, so we should all celebrate it together.