Outlander links can help put Dysart on world map

Joleen Carrington, Sarah Meikle and Eunice Cameron, with Cllr Cameron and Audrey Peebles and Karen Williams from Fife Coast Trust.  credit- Fife Photo Agency
Joleen Carrington, Sarah Meikle and Eunice Cameron, with Cllr Cameron and Audrey Peebles and Karen Williams from Fife Coast Trust. credit- Fife Photo Agency

Residents and groups in Dysart are pushing to promote the village on the back of its success in the hit drama Outlander.

And they are hoping that Fife Council will back a number of initiatives to bring more tourists in and 
encourage them to spend more time exploring the area.

Sam Heughan (Jamie) and Caitriona Balfe (Claire) on the set of Outlander at Dysart harbour. Pics by Steven Brown.

Sam Heughan (Jamie) and Caitriona Balfe (Claire) on the set of Outlander at Dysart harbour. Pics by Steven Brown.

Dysart harbour featured prominently in the second 
series of the hit television 
series as the 18th century port of Le Havre in France.

Since then it has been 
included in bus tours 
taking in Fife’s locations in the 
programme, alongside 
Culross and Falkland, with resident Eunice Cameron organising an Outlander-themed market in a local 
hotel last year.

But residents, the 
local community council and 
elected members on Fife Council agree that more needs to be done to promote Dysart and encourage people to visit and spend time there.

Councillor Ian Cameron is helping to co-ordinate various initiatives.

“Making the most of the Outlander series is something that I am very keen on making work,” he said.

“Outlander is a key area identified for opportunity in our Kirkcaldy Area Tourism Plan and I have been 
raising it at our Local Tourism 
Association meetings to 
discuss how we can do more to bring visitors in.”

Fife Coast and 
Countryside Trust is 
also working on increasing its flexibility to respond to 
opportunities like 
Outlander, and says it would be happy to be 
involved in organising 
specific events.

One of the ideas is a 
regular Dysart Market which sprang from a craft market planned for next weekend, and Cllr Cameron has met with Jim Davis, Commodore of Dysart Harbour, who 
supports the idea of exploiting the kudos of the Outlander connection.

“I have great ambition for the market event and see the Bowhouse initiative up the coast as a model to aspire to. By extending this to the 
harbour, where a fresh catch is landed each day, there’s a lot to offer.”

Other ideas include 
music and film events as the harbour is a natural amphitheatre, and offering places to eat and drink.

Eunice Cameron has been trying to get the Harbourmaster’s House to extend its opening hours to offer evening dining, while Dysart Community Council is working to have more lighting and signs at the entrance to Dysart to encourage visitors.

Mike Diamond and Sarah Meikle, who have run the Dysart Coffee Cabin for around nine months are also keen to raise Dysart’s profile and say they have had a number of visitors who have come to the village to see where Outlander was filmed.

“The harbour is part of the tours, but for many that is all they see and they don’t spend much time here,” said Sarah.

“With two more series of Outlander just announced, now would be a great time to have more happening here to bring in more people.”

The pair have arranged a craft fair to raise money for the Love Oliver children’s cancer charity on June 2 and 3, with children’s clothes, knitted goods, handbags, customised Lego figures and much more.

“Obviously this is not an Outlander thing, but we are hoping that it brings in people interested in local crafts and helps give Dysart a bit of a boost,” added Mike.