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Highland company hopes to spot Nessie in London or Edinburgh as it sends face masks to Prime Minister and First Minister


By Val Sweeney

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The novel face masks are being sent to the Prime Minister and First Minister.
The novel face masks are being sent to the Prime Minister and First Minister.

Special deliveries of Nessie face masks are set to be made to Prime Minister Boris Johnston and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon from the Highlands.

Drumnadrochit-based hospitality and catering firm Cobbs commissioned the specially-designed face coverings – featuring Loch Ness's most elusive resident – as face masks became compulsory in Scotland's shops earlier this month.

Since then, they have been snapped up with orders coming in from all over the UK and other parts of the world in addition to sales in Cobbs outlets and cafés in the Highlands.

The company has now dispatched the masks – which aim to promote Highland tourism as well as highlighting social distancing due to the coronavirus pandemic – to the two political leaders.

The Nessie face masks are proving popular around the world.
The Nessie face masks are proving popular around the world.

Cobbs director Fraser Campbell is now hoping to spot Nessie in either London or Edinburgh.

"We will be watching every TV interview to see who will be the first to wear a Nessie mask!" said Mr Campbell who also urged the public to keep a lookout.

"The first member of the public to spot a Nessie mask on either of them will get a Cobbs cake and so will Boris Johnson or Nicola Sturgeon."

The initial consignment of 250 masks quickly sold out and since then almost 1000 have been sold with a further 1000 due to be delivered to Cobbs next week.

"People seem to like them," Mr Campbell said.

"In the times we are living in, it is a wee bit of fun about Nessie socially distancing for 200 million years."

As well as Scotland and other parts of the UK, online orders are also coming in from as far away as the USA, China and France.

"The Chinese love Scotland, the Highlands and Nessie," Mr Campbell said.

"We are missing out visitors from overseas but look forward to welcoming them back next year."

Willie Cameron, of the Cobbs group, puts on his mask.
Willie Cameron, of the Cobbs group, puts on his mask.

The company is also hoping to take delivery next week of masks featuring 40 different clans plus tartan designs.

In the meantime, it is reopening rooms at three of its hotels tomorrow. They are the Loch Ness Clansman Hotel, Loch Ness Country House Hotel and Loch Ness Lodge

It follows the re-opening of its Loch Ness Drumnadrochit Hotel on July 15.

Related story: Nessie leads the way as face coverings become mandatory in shops


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