Burns could bring tourists to Dumfries & Galloway

DUMFRIES & Galloway wants to cash-in on its connections to national bard Robert Burns.

Burns-related tourism currently generates £21 million a year for the region – a fraction of the estimated £121m it earns for neighbouring Ayrshire.

Now, a study commissioned Dumfries & Galloway Council has laid out a four-year plan to grow Burns tourism, especially in Nithsdale.

The poet wrote more than 130 poems ad songs after moving to Dumfriesshire with his family in 1788.

These include some of his greatest hits, including Tam O’Shanter and Auld Lang Syne.

Burns’ leased Ellisland Farm near Dumfries and later moved into the town.

He declared The Globe Inn to be his “favourite howff”, and he died and was buried in Dumfries in 1796.

Professor Gerard Carruthers, head of Scottish literature at the University of Glasgow and secretary of the Robert Burns Ellisland Trust, said: “Post-covid, people might well have a fresh appreciation of what is on their door-step or nearby.

“Burns’ Dumfriesshire is one of the historic cultural jewels of the south west of Scotland.

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