LARGS and Millport are in line to benefit from a £400,000 tourism windfall.

The funding has been confirmed to boost and link spots around Ayrshire and west coast islands.

The Scottish Government has announced the investment in the 'Coig tourism project' which will be in a similar vane to the North Coast 500 route which has been so successful, linking many features in the Highlands.

Local MSP Kenneth Gibson explained: “I welcome the SNP Government’s commitment to tourism in North Ayrshire in the form of what is now a £0.7 million contribution to the Coig. The word Coig is Gaelic for “five” as it will be a collection of five tourism trails across Ayrshire, the Firth of Clyde and the islands of Arran, Bute and Cumbrae."

This follows the £300,000 investment it made earlier this year, giving visitors the chance to enjoy the area’s islands, coastal landscapes, harbours and beaches.

The Scottish Government has announced it will work with the industry to help it to continue to deliver high-quality, value-for-money and memorable experiences, and supporting the growth of a skilled workforce.

Specific commitments include the launch of a nationwide digital trail, providing an online experience featuring all of Scotland’s UNESCO sites - which taps into heritage sites from all over the globe.

The introduction of an Islands Passport early next year to further encourage visitors to more of Scotland’s inhabited islands.

An additional £3 million in 2020/21 will continue the highly successful Rural Tourism Infrastructure Fund.

The Scottish Government is also set to develop an action plan to support re-population of our rural and island communities and work with partners to test approaches using small scale pilots in rural Scotland.

The ‘Stay in Scotland’ campaign will work with rural businesses and industries to promote it to employees and we will showcase Scotland as a desirable place to work and live to recruitment agencies at home and overseas.

Kenneth Gibson added: “I have raised the issue of depopulation in Parliament on multiple occasions and am pleased that the SNP Government recognises that we need to sustain our rural and island communities and help them thrive.

"I look forward to progress in the months and years ahead."

Scottish Tourism Secretary Fiona Hyslop added: “Our tourism industry is of crucial importance to the Scottish economy.

“We are committed to working with the sector to support them through this uncertain time and ensure that they can continue to offer high-quality experiences for visitors while minimising the impact on the environment and the lives of those who live here all year round.”