Visitor Centre is Pride of Inverurie

Jan Lythgoe and Catherine Leaney of the Bennachie Visitor Centre with the Tourist Hotspot of the Year Award
Jan Lythgoe and Catherine Leaney of the Bennachie Visitor Centre with the Tourist Hotspot of the Year Award

The Bennachie Visitor Centre has been crowned Tourist Hotspot of the Year at the Pride of Inverurie Awards 2018.

The event was held at Inverurie Town Hall on Friday, August 24, when the centre was announced as winner.

Bennachie Centre warden, Jan Lythgoe, received the prize on behalf of the centre, along with seasonal assistant Catherine Leaney.

Jan said: “We were delighted when we heard that we were finalists in this category alongside Inverurie Gold Club and Castle Fraser.

“To be the winner is amazing - the Pride of Inverurie Awards have helped put us on the map.”

The visitor centre has undergone a programme of phased improvements since 2014 and offers an indoor seating area where visitors can enjoy snacks and hot drinks.

Visitor facilities have been enhanced with the creation of a Community Room, touch-screen ‘Bennachie Experience’ and a new information and retail area.

This has resulted in visitor numbers increasing from 15,000 a year in 2007 to 40,000 a year in 2017. It has also been awarded four star status by VisitScotland.

The centre will continue to look forward and improve its facilities for new and repeat visitors, responding to changing customer needs and industry trends.

The Bennachie Visitor Centre is run through a partnership agreement between Aberdeenshire Council, The Bennachie Centre Trust, Forest Enterprise Scotland and the Bailies of Bennachie.