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HIE seeks creative future for John O'Groats

22 March 2011

The first in a series of tenders to create the future design of one of the North's most iconic visitor destinations is being advertised.

HIE, supported by project funding from the Scottish Government and the European Community Highland LEADER 2007-2013 programme, is searching for artists to lead on a number of temporary and permanent art projects for John O'Groats.

Work will begin alongside the other first phase projects, which include the multi-million pound development of the John O'Groats House Hotel and creation of self catering luxury lodges.

Nick Scroggie of HIE commented: "We are delighted that UK tourism partners Heritage Great Britain and Natural Retreats are investing in John O'Groats and that their plans are in place to start the major construction work this year. While the development of the accommodation is a vital element of the master plan, there are also many partners working to ensure that the vision which originally came from local people and visitors is delivered.

"The quality of the design for John O'Groats is an important part of the visitor experience. We want to create a destination which will bring people to the area and encourage them to stay longer.

"There's also an opportunity to provide additional interest for visitors now. The development of John O'Groats will take time and the progress itself will attract significant attention. We want to give a clear message that this is a place where creative events are happening."

The first key commission is a 10-week temporary installation, using the exterior of the currently derelict John O'Groats House Hotel as a canvas. The agency is also looking for a 'concept artist' to lead debate and develop a concept document for the overall development, as well as artists to deliver temporary commissions and an overall arts co-ordinator to work with stakeholders and partners.

In 2010 HIE commissioned the development of a Public Arts Strategy for John O'Groats.

Full information about the developments in John O'Groats and the current tenders is available in our John O'Groats section.

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