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22 Jul 2014

Spotlight on Northern Ireland at Glasgow 2014

Commonwealth Games provide fantastic platform to showcase Northern Ireland

The highly-anticipated Commonwealth Games kick off in Glasgow tomorrow (23 July) and with Northern Ireland sending its largest-ever Commonwealth Games team to take part – 117 athletes competing in 14 sports – Tourism Ireland is taking every opportunity to maximise the tourism potential of the Games for Northern Ireland.

Tourism Ireland has produced a new online film, specially created to highlight Northern Ireland and its “extraordinary athletes from an extraordinary place” to the organisation’s international audience – on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and on Ireland.com. The two-minute film features some of the competing athletes – including swimmer Sycerika McMahon, boxer Steven Ward and triathletes Emma Sharkey and Harry Speers, describing how Northern Ireland inspires them. The video also stars our golfing heroes and features spectacular aerial footage of the Causeway Coast – including the Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge, Dunluce Castle and the Giant’s Causeway – the Sperrins, as well as the Belfast skyline – giving people a flavour of what to expect on a short break or holiday here and encouraging prospective travellers everywhere to put Northern Ireland on their ‘wish-list’. 

With more than 4,500 athletes and 2,000 officials from 71 nations and territories descending on Glasgow, the Commonwealth Games presents a wonderful platform to showcase Northern Ireland. Vanessa Markey, Tourism Ireland’s head of Great Britain, said: “The proximity of this summer’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow presents a unique opportunity to showcase Northern Ireland – to the visiting athletes, visitors and the significant number of international media attending the Games. We have put in place an extensive programme of activity, to maximise this opportunity for Northern Ireland, in advance of and during the Games.”

As well as the online film, Tourism Ireland’s busy programme of promotions to leverage the Commonwealth Games for Northern Ireland also includes:
  • almost 50,000 commuters and visitors to Glasgow will see a specially-created Tourism Ireland ad on the city’s public transport system over the next two weeks, with the tagline “Northern Ireland is right on your doorstep” and featuring spectacular images of Titanic Belfast, the Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge, the Giant’s Causeway and the Dark Hedges near Ballymoney; a similar ad will also appear in the souvenir programme guide for the Games;
  • a Northern Ireland feature will appear in The Telegraph on the opening day of the Games this week (23 July), reaching hundreds of thousands of readers across Britain. It will include interviews with the athletes and chef de mission, Robert McVeigh, and carry the heading “Commonwealth Games athletes harness the spirit that’s inspiring Northern Ireland’s rebirth”; 
  • a series of advertorials will also appear in The Herald Scotland, highlighting the connections between the people of Scotland and Northern Ireland; and promotions to win a holiday in Northern Ireland will appear in the Sunday Express and The Press and Journal newspapers; 
  • a targeted publicity programme is highlighting Northern Ireland to influential Scottish media, reminding them that Northern Ireland is just a “hop, skip and jump away”;
  • social media is also playing a role in promoting Northern Ireland as Scotland’s next-door neighbour, including Facebook and Twitter;
  • Tourism Ireland will have a presence, with VisitBritain, in the Commonwealth Games media centre, where information and tips about Northern Ireland, as well as sample itineraries, will be distributed to the international media; 
  • and influential business leaders attended an event in Glasgow on Monday (21 July), organised by Tourism Ireland in association with Northern Irish Connections, to highlight Northern Ireland as a great place to do business.

Notes To Editors

  • Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
  • Tourism is responsible for in excess of 4.9% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 40,000 jobs.
  • In 2013, an estimated 1.7 million overseas visitors visited Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of approximately £474 million. 
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is ireland.com, which is available in ten different language versions for 30+ markets around the world this year

Previous Press Release

21 Jul 2014

Spotlight on the Wild Atlantic Way in Britain