Morag Thomson

Marketing and PR

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Are Bleisure Trips the latest Staff Incentive?

Posted on June 14, 2016 at 11:10 AM

During the Summer Months More and More Staff Extend Business Trips with Leisure Time


Despite what most people think, business travel was never designed to be enjoyable! Travellers find themselves rushing from airport, to taxi to meeting to hotel, an overnight stay and then you have to do the same thing all over again the next day in reverse. Before you know it, your back at your desk in the office, having visited a city but not seen any attractions or culture.


In 2014, Skift published a report on Bleisure and since then the term “Bleisure” has been a hot topic for businesses and the business traveller. At the time as many as 83% of respondents said they used time while away on business trips to explore and enjoy the city they are visiting - it was a real eye opener for businesses and it has since become clear that bleisure trips will continue to grow.


Travel Management Companies are seeing increasing amounts of clients extending their trips and bleisure is fast becoming a way of life for the business traveller. Many see extending their work trips as a perk of the job. The flip side is leisure travellers continue to work while on holiday (when was the last time you left your work mobile at home while on holiday).


Franc Jeffrey from EQ Travel Management commented “We find that when a business trip is extended with family or friends, the burden of travel is lessened and can make employees more willing to travel in the first place. We also have clients advising us that bleisure trips can be advantageous to the company as a whole, with staff gaining better knowledge of a city and its culture being good for business.


With all this in mind, it’s evident that bleisure travel is very much becoming part of the business travel world, but how is it managed? Many SME’s corporate travel policies don’t allow for grey areas such as bleisure. The biggest questions are – who pays for the extra nights’ hotel accommodation and the flights home?


This all goes back to having a clear and concise travel policy and making sure it covers bleisure activity, otherwise extending business trips for bleisure would have to be decided by management on a case by case basis and you run into the danger of a member of staff feeling aggrieved that their bleisure trip isn’t paid for while another member of staff is.


But, as a business, what do you need to consider?


First of all – if your staff re on business they would have to fly home anyway, so we would always advise that travel policies state the flights home are paid for by the business, as long as there is no substantial increase in price.


The accommodation costs are usually the main issue, however we find these are usually negated by cheaper "off peak" weekend flights ie flights on a Friday night busy business routes, usually come at a premium, whereas on a Sunday afternoon they these flights are cheaper, most businesses are happy to offset this cost on the extra hotel nights’ hotel accommodation cost.


Businesses also finding that airmiles and hotel loyalty schemes are playing their part in bleisure travel as travellers use airmiles or points to fly their partner to join then or extend their hotel stay.


Staff are increasingly expected to work harder and travel more. If you can create solutions that allows them to play hard at the same time it can add to the work life balance motivating them and in turn make them happier and more productive, which of course helps the bottom line.


Posted on May 31, 2016 at 9:55 AM




Recognised as a Top Performing Hotel in Fife as Reviewed by Travellers on the World’s Largest Travel Site

Balmule House, near Dunfermline has received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award for the second year. The Awards, now in their sixth year, celebrates excellence in hospitality and is given only to establishments that consistently achieve great reviews on TripAdvisor. Certificate of Excellence winners include accommodations, eateries and attractions located all over the world that have continually delivered a superior customer experience.


When selecting Certificate of Excellence winners, TripAdvisor uses a proprietary algorithm to determine the honorees that takes into account the quality, quantity and recency of reviews and opinions submitted by travellers on TripAdvisor over a 12-month period as well as business’s tenure and ranking on the Popularity Index on the site. To qualify, a business must maintain an overall TripAdvisor bubble rating of at least four out of five, have a minimum number of reviews and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months.


Stuart McColl, General Manager of Balmule commented “Winning the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence is a true source of pride for the entire team at Balmule House and we’d like to thank all of our past guests who took the time to complete a review on TripAdvisor. Our Trip Advisor reviews come from hotel guests, exclusive use and wedding parties so there is no greater seal of approval than being recognised by our customers. With the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence based on customer reviews, the accolade is a remarkable vote of confidence to all aspects of our business and our continued commitment to excellence.”

Central & West Fife Show 2016

Posted on May 26, 2016 at 5:20 AM


Central & West Fife Show

Farming Fun for all the Family


Central & West Fife Show will be held on Saturday 4th June with a day of family fun and animal antics. Some of the highlights of this year’s show include a Farm Petting Zoo with calf, lambs, piglets and baby chicks for children (and adults) to see and interact with. There will also be a display by the renowned Mordor Gun Dogs.


On the run up to the show, there has also been a huge interest in the children scarecrow competition, which has been opened up to schools in the area. Entries are open for children up to 14 years old and can be brought along on the day before 11am. Each entry into the competition will also allow free entry to the show for the child and one adult.


The Royal Highland Education Trust will also be in attendance showing children how to milk a cow and children will also have the opportunity to enter the design a poster and decorate a cup cake competition.


The show is continuing its strong focus on local food and crafts, with cookery demonstrations by Jenny Thomson from Courses for Cooks and the national heat of Young Farmers, Ready Steady Country Cook competition. The Food and Craft tent will also be showcasing local foods and craft from a variety of Scottish producers.


Central & West Fife Show enables the public to see a variety of animals including dairy and beef cattle, sheep, poultry, Clydesdale horses, ponies and show jumping. The main ring entertainment includes Clydesdale Horse Turnouts, Terrier Racing and the Regional Tug of War Qualifiers for the Royal Highland Show. If the entertainment in the main ring isn't for you then there is still plenty to see such as a vintage steam engine with musical organ and a variety of trade stands featuring everything from tractors to toys.


The show is also holding a Companion Dog Show, with classes ranging from pedigree puppies through to the waggiest tail. Entries are taken from 1.30pm on the day with judging starting at 2pm.


Central and West Fie Show is held at Hilton Farm, near Kelty with kind permission of the Thomson Family. West Fife Show is on Saturday 4th June 9am – 5pm at Hilton Farm, Kelty, KY4 0HF


Admission Fees – Adults £8 · OAPs £4 · Children under 14 FREE · FREE PARKING

For further information on the show please log on to


Distribution Date – 26th May 2016

Milnathort Film House Holds Fundraiser for Broke Not Broken

Posted on May 2, 2016 at 5:25 AM

Local community cinema group, Milnathort Filmhouse is hosting another Super Saturday double bill on Saturday 7th May!


The double bill will start with a showing of kids movie "The Good Dinosaur " in the afternoon. The evening screening is British comedy drama "The Lady in the Van" starting Dame Maggie Smith and Alex Jennings. All ticket proceeds from the evening screening will be donated to Kinross-shire charity, Broke Not Broken.



Morag Saunders from Milnathort Filmhouse commented "as a community group one of our principal goals is to support and give back to the local community which is why we're thrilled to be supporting local charity, Broke not Broken. There will also be the opportunity to donate food during both screenings with our pop-up food bank with a particular focus on collecting cereals, tinned veg, tinned puddings, tinned fruit and toiletries".



Both movies will be shown on Saturday 7th May, with The Good Dinosaur starting at 3pm and The Lady in the Van showing at 8.30pm. Tickets can be reserved via the website. More details available at






Milnathort Film House is a non profit voluntary local Community Cinema, passionate about using film to make a positive contribution to our local community. They have a major focus is making the big screen experience affordable & local.

Milnathort Film House currently donate from their annual profits to the Milnathort Town Hall Refurbishment Fund.


Posted on March 15, 2016 at 5:25 AM

Balmule House, near Dunfermline has won the Hotels Combined Stellar Stay Award in recognition that the hotel is now representing the top 3% in the United Kingdom for customer satisfaction.


This is further recognition for the Dunfermline based venue which last year gained 5 Stars from Visit Scotland, TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award and was also short-listed for the Hilden Style Awards.


Morag Thomson from Balmule House commented “we're thrilled that we've won this award from Hotels Combined, is a real source of pride for the entire team at Balmule House, we work very hard to ensure that the level of service we provide is to the very highest standard and consistent for all our guests."


Winners of the national awards were selected using strict criteria such as the quality and consistency of reviews, the absence of recurring or unsolved issues with costumers, popularity of the hotel and of course, the overall resulting score. Balmule House matched all the criteria obtaining 127 impressive reviews with an outstanding overall score of 9.55/10.