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Island crime event boosts Bute economy

Rothesay's crime writing festival, Bute Noir, expanded by more than 50% this year bringing around 250 visitors to the island specifically for the event.

Held over three days in August, this year 26 authors including international best-sellers such as Ian Rankin, Ann Cleeves and Christopher Brookmyre made the journey to host a series of writing workshops and meet the author events.

Inspector Rebus creator Ian Rankin, who has sold more than 20 million books over the course of his career, said:

'A lovely weekend. I had a blast. Bute Noir is a great festival; great events run with a smile.'

Overall 1800 admissions to events were recorded and organiser Karen Latto said she was delighted to see it grow in popularity. 

'We are hugely grateful to Caledonian MacBrayne for their continued support of Bute Noir. One of the main attractions for the visiting author is the island setting and we quite literally couldn't get them there without CalMac.' 

Ian Rankin

Picture shows: Ian Rankin was one of the many famous faces to make an appearance at this year's Bute Noir.

Ferry operator CalMac was again a main sponsor of the event. It serves Bute with more than 32,000 sailings every year from Wemyss Bay and from Colintraive to Rhubodach in the north of the island. 

CalMac's Director of Community and Stakeholder Engagement, Brian Fulton said:

'As a major player in island life we aim to help generate economic growth for our communities where we can. Support for events like Bute Noir plays a big part in how we can add real value beyond being a transport operator.
'With virtually all the income generated from the event benefitting local businesses such as accommodation providers, bars and restaurants it is an ideal way for us to facilitate bringing more spending visitors to the island.' 

CalMac supports more than 40 community events across its area of operations every year.

Last year the ferry operator's 33-strong fleet carried more than 5.3 million passengers and 1.4 million vehicles to 50 ports and slipways on island and remote mainland locations.


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