Littlehouse Media

Immerse yourself in Lochaber Ideas Week 2019

From 18 to 22 November 2019 Lochaber Chamber of Commerce once again presents its flagship week of events to inspire, educate and motivate the business and wider community of Lochaber and the Highlands; bringing everyone together to focus on and celebrate the power of ideas.


The 2019 Lochaber Ideas Week programme is an action-packed week of workshops, stimulating discussions, lively networking events and inspiring talks, all staged in Fort William and across the region.  It features some fascinating people with inspirational stories; invaluable business skills training; vital business debates, together with action-orientated discussions hitting on today’s critical cultural and social issues.  As well as partnering with organisations across the Highlands to offer exclusive opportunities to promote business growth, the 2019 programme also includes a special reimagined tourism day in Glencoe.


The 2018 Lochaber Ideas Week was the busiest yet, with over 1,000 people taking part in a wide range of seminars, workshops and talks. CEO of Lochaber Chamber of Commerce, Frazer Coupland, reflected on its success; whilst looking ahead to this year’s exciting programme: “As we launch our sixth annual Lochaber Ideas Week, it is exciting to see how the week has grown and evolved to become a cornerstone of the Chamber’s work that is deeply engaged and owned by our community. We believe that events like this can be a catalyst for positive economic and social change and will therefore help to build a better-connected community.


“Lochaber Ideas Week is all about inspiration and creativity in business. It’s a week of events offering everyone the opportunity to think about the big picture and make connections as well as learn new business skills. It’s open to the entire community and we’re delighted that so many people come along and get involved.  We’re proud to be able to bring such a unique and inspiring range of events to Lochaber.”


Some Lochaber Ideas Week 2019 programme highlights include:

Monday 18 November

Russell Jones will entertain the audience with a lively motivational talk based on his experience of making the huge life change from renowned Kingussie shinty player to globe-crossing long-distance cyclist.  Russell’s humour, attitude and tales of adventure around the world guarantee an uplifting and inspiring evening.

Business Skills Seminars – In the morning session John Paul Hughes, the guru of creativity in business, will encourage attendees to ‘think different’ in our approach to all areas of our work. In the afternoon former top-level international rower and diplomat, Cath Bishop, will draw on her experiences in elite sport and international relations to lead a special session on ‘practical strategies’ for improving performance and creating strong teams.

Tuesday 19 November

The fast-paced and incredibly popular ‘Around Lochaber in 80 Tables’ speed-networking event. Last year’s event led to some new collaborative business ventures as well as offering a fun and effective way to make direct business to business connections.

Taking its cue from the climate challenge facing us all, Lochaber Chamber of Commerce is hosting an important workshop for all businesses on ‘Net Zero Business’, featuring a range of contributors from industry and environmental backgrounds to discuss and tackle the challenges and imperative of becoming a zero-carbon economy.

Question Time – a lively evening of debate when a diverse panel from business, community and politics will face wide-ranging Q & A from members of the Lochaber public.

Wednesday 20 November

Lochaber Ideas Week’s first-ever Women in Business Seminar, focusing on the topic of ‘Leaning into Leadership’ with special guest speaker, Sarah Heward, owner of the Real Food Cafe, Tyndrum. Sarah is a truly inspirational business woman who turned a derelict ‘Little Chef’ in Tyndrum into a thriving and innovative fast-food eatery, with a strong ethical and environmental focus.

Lord David Steel will deliver this year’s Charles Kennedy Lecture, the annual lecture set up in memory of the former Liberal Democrat leader and long-serving Lochaber MP.  Lord Steel, himself a former leader of the Liberal Democrats and long-serving MP with a very distinguished career in politics and public service, follows in the esteemed footsteps of Baron Jim Wallace, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, Lord Thurso and Alastair Campbell as guest speaker.

Thursday 21 November

The 2019 Tourism Summit at the new Kingshouse Hotel, Glencoe, where big names from the industry will consider the hot tourism topics of today and future trends for Lochaber and beyond. Mountain biker and brand ambassador Hannah Barnes and renowned photographer Brodie Hood will demonstrate how to use social media to best effect to connect with your audience; Pat Duglass from Sustrans will discuss the huge opportunities for cycle tourism; Stephen Leckie (CEO of Crieff Hydro group of hotels) will inspire attendees with his vision for tourism and doing things the independent way;  and Cat Leaver, Director of newly created ‘Brand Scotland’, will give delegates an insight into the new Scottish strategy for success.

Friday 22 November

Leadership coach Don MacNaughton will lead a motivational seminar on getting the most from your teams and yourself.

The week is rounded off by the Lochaber Ideas Week Gala Dinner, hosted by VisitScotland’s Riddell Graham, at the Moorings Hotel, Fort William. This year’s after-dinner speaker is inspirational entrepreneur Mike Stevenson, whose journey from a life on the streets to successful entrepreneur is as riveting as it is inspiring and uplifting.


To find out more about all the events taking place during Lochaber Ideas Week and to book tickets; and how you can boost your business through sponsorship opportunities, go to

or call 01397 705 765 to chat to a member of the team.




Media contact

Paddy Cuthbert | Littlehouse Media | E: [email protected]

M: +44 (0)7913 951717


Image attached: Caption: Lisa Wharton and Mark Gibbings, from Lochaber Chamber of Commerce, immerse themselves in the finer details of the Lochaber Ideas Week programme. Please credit: Brodie Hood. Other photos can be downloaded here:


Notes to Editors


Lochaber Ideas Week

Lochaber Ideas Week is owned by Lochaber Chamber of Commerce Ltd


Lochaber Chamber of Commerce is a fully affiliated member of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce network, which together represents more than 12,000 businesses throughout Scotland.


Lochaber Chamber represents more than 200 businesses in Lochaber collectively employing 3500+ people across all sectors [c60% 15-64 age working population in Lochaber]. They work locally, nationally and internationally to support business from sole traders to international organisations.


Ultimately, Lochaber Ideas Week is a catalyst to stimulate fresh initiatives and ventures, creating new connections and points of collaboration designed to enhance Fort William and Lochaber, The Outdoor Capital of the UK, as a fantastic place in which to live, work and visit.


Lochaber Chamber of Commerce website:

Lochaber Chamber of Commerce on Twitter:

Lochaber Chamber of Commerce on Facebook:



You Might Also Like

Epic Halloween tale of ‘Ned vs Monster’ in the Outdoor Capital

Nevis Range looks forward to reopening in July

Fort William Mountain Festival 2021 goes Covid-19 safe

Outdoor Capital Activities and Attractions Expo open for tourism business

Jura, the Border Collie, trains to become the first Ski Patrol rescue dog at Nevis Range

Get your adventure challenge on with Project: Explore

Nevis Range and Trek renew commercial partnership for 2020/21

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company has been supercharged

Start your Highland biking adventure at the new Nevis Range Bike School

SYHA appoints Lois Marshall as Youth & Volunteer Engagement Manager

OCUK unveil their new branded gondola at Nevis Range

Scottish Climbing Instructor, Tim Miller, wins Youth Mountain Culture Award

Three female adventurers to take on epic 1936 cycling trip

Developing for the future at Nevis Range!

Hostelling Scotland opens four summer youth hostels in 2018

Hostelling Scotland begins phased opening of Youth Hostel network

ITV4 to screen every minute of OVO Energy Tour of Britain live

SYHA opens new summer youth hostel in Edinburgh

New European partnership to upskill adventure tourism in five countries

Becoming a Conscious Host: Carbon Neutrality and Beyond

Glen Nevis Youth Hostel re-opens after major redevelopment project

‘Death Zone’ mountaineer, Nirmal Purja, to headline Fort William Mountain Festival 2020

National Funding Boost for Cream o’ the Croft and The Eliminator

Dr Liz Cameron, Scotland’s voice of business, to headline women’s networking lunch

Loch Ossian and Torridon Youth Hostels shortlisted in TGO Reader Awards

Planning on holidaying at home? Give hostelling a go!

Route announcement confirmed for HSBC City Ride in Edinburgh

A muckin’ great Audax, perfect for Cream o’ the Croft road cyclists

New Lochaber website aiming high

Millburn Academy ensures a warm welcome to Inverness Youth Hostel

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company sees 80% rise in Lockdown sales

Media Advisory – UK’s highest Shinty match to promote tourism in Lochaber

‘A Meeting of Minds 2’ celebrates innovation in Scotland’s aquaculture sector

Young people invited to collaborate in Muckin’ good summer festivals

Big Biking October – two International bike events for the Outdoor Capital

Former Farrier, Matthew Jackson, appointed Chair of DYW West Highland

Videos highlight the benefits of apprenticeships in the West Highlands

The Cream of Enduro will rise to the top at Comrie Croft

Enduro riders, prepare yourselves for a Highland Clan battle!

SYHA Hostelling Scotland assist in a Recovery Version

New look Edinburgh Central Youth Hostel, new era of hostelling in the Capital

Media Advisory – Images – The Ultra Tour of Edinburgh

One Lochaber Leadership Programme to be launched at Lochaber Ideas Week

Lochaber’s ‘Connect to Your Adventure’ digital marketing campaign, a huge success

Lochaber Tourism Day with Cal Mac – Debate, Engage, Network

Nevis Range to turn back the clock to 1989 to celebrate 30 years of adventure

An appetite for adventure in the North West Highlands

SKI-AN-DURO, a new ski and mountain bike Enduro for Scotland

New hydro scheme powers Scottish mountain resort

Are you hard enough to take on The Double Stalker?

Scottish Enduro Series confirms POC as headline sponsor for fifth year

Chris O’Brien appointed Destination Manager for the Outdoor Capital of the UK

Visit Moray Speyside launches their biggest ever UK marketing campaign

Haggis from Scotland’s first free-range Haggis farm goes on sale in Lochaber

Coast to Coast – run, bike ride and kayak 105 miles across Scotland

The UK’s first waymarked gravel cycling trails opened near Aberfoyle

‘Connect To Your Adventure!’ – big success in just 7 weeks

Danny MacAskill launches video, ‘Danny Daycare’. Best ‘uncle’ ever?

SYHA partners with Ayrshire College for valuable volunteer experience

‘A Meeting of Minds’ – An online event to celebrate Scotland’s aquaculture sector

SYHA collaborates with Glasgow Caledonian University

Fort William – the perfect cruise destination

Sporting legend Gavin Hastings to inspire Lochaber at Ideas Week 2017

Hostelling Scotland fully open for business after two years

Lochaber’s Nevis Range becomes an accredited Living Wage employer

Media Advisory – 500 runners to tame Edinburgh with the inaugural Ultra Tour

300 Dutch adventurers to run, bike and kayak across Scotland

SYHA Hostelling Scotland – building Scottish hostelling for the future

Gravelfoyle – Gravel Cycling at the heart of Aberfoyle’s new tourism brand

Celebrating 90 years of Scottish hostelling

Lochaber community is pulling together to give Nevis Range a lift after lockdown!

Hostelling Scotland to temporarily close Youth Hostel network

Midlothian ‘zero carbon’ office development seeks Planning in Principle

Go Swim Loch Lomond – a new open water event for Scotland

Top award for World renowned Scottish landscape photographer, Colin Prior

Paul Merton Visits SYHA’s Loch Ossian Hostel – Paul Merton’s Secret Stations

Figurehead environmental campaigner, Dave Morris, wins top mountain award

Youth development key to Edinburgh Central’s 10th Anniversary

Fort William Mountain Festival back to a live, multi-venue event in 2022

Run Scotland on The Ultra Tour of Arran

Nevis Range and Trek renew commercial partnership for 2019/20

Nevis Range partner with Disability Snowsport UK for Winter 18/19

OATS in search of a Fairy Pool of staff

Discover Scotland’s ‘Braw Buildings’ with Hostelling Scotland

Frazer Coupland appointed Chair of The Highland Tourism Partnership

‘What would Mary do?’ at the Fort William Mountain Festival

Entries open for SKI-AN-DURO, Scotland’s new ski and mountain bike Enduro

Nevis Range and Trek announce a partnership for 2018/19

Lochaber Ideas Week returns to Fort William after a two-year covid hiatus

Hostelling Scotland, a new brand identity unveiled

Business Community Programme launched for Lochaber Ideas Week 2018

SYHA’s Glasgow Metro youth hostel awarded 3 stars by VisitScotland

Lochaber Tourism Summit 2019, a must-attend event for Highland tourism businesses

#myoutdoorcapital – OCUK to put visitors firmly in the frame

Fort William has all the Mòd cons

Run Scotland in two days with the new Ultra Tour of Arran

Noel Williams wins 2019 Scottish Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

Video series to showcase apprenticeships in the West Highlands launched

Inverness Youth Hostel gets a fresh new look

The new Pentland Trail Centre – The future for Edinburgh biking

Nevis Range team up with Endura

Nevis Range is making it snow all season long!

Rob Cochrane wins 2019 Scottish Youth Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

Finance and Economy Secretary, Kate Forbes, opens car park and off-grid toilets at Skye’s Iconic Fairy Pools

The Ultra Tour of Arran, a big draw for international adventure tourists

Nevis Range moving forward with interim CEO Rod Pashley

The ultimate runners’ sightseeing tour of Edinburgh returns

Gold and Silver gongs for Torridon and Loch Ossian Youth Hostels in TGO Reader Awards

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company is being supercharged

Scran Café – Youth powered café launched by Scran Academy

People are at the heart of SYHA Hostelling Scotland!

Summer Youth Hostel Returns to Glasgow

Nevis Range, Scotland’s highest snowsports destination, open for business

Scran Academy on ‘foodwill’ tour of Edinburgh

Scran Academy reach 100,000 essential meals delivery milestone

Crieff antique dealer unearths rare Rolex ‘MilSub’ dive watch worth £120,000

Hot water on tap for Loch Ossian Youth Hostel

VisitScotland’s Lord Thurso to deliver The Charles Kennedy Memorial Lecture

POC headline sponsor for Scottish Enduro Series for sixth year

Changing times at Nevis Range Mountain Experience!

Keith Legge, CEO of SYHA Hostelling Scotland, steps down after 13 years

Two Scottish youth hostels celebrate landmark anniversaries

Margo Paterson appointed as CEO of SYHA Hostelling Scotland