Local MP, Drew Hendry (pictured) has welcomed the Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work and Culture’s announcement today, which includes support for a small bed and breakfast owners previously missing out on financial assistance because they do not use a business bank account.
Earlier this month the Scottish Government launched a new hardship fund for the creative, tourism and hospitality sectors as part of £2.3 billion of measures to help companies struggling financially due to the pandemic.
However, measures to protect the scheme from fraudulent activity has left some B&B owners without support because the scheme requires that the business operates with a business bank.
Mr Hendry recently wrote to the Cabinet Secretary to ask for a new fund to support these business owners and had welcomed today’s announcement that as of 15 June, B&Bs can apply to a scheme administered by local authorities for a lump sum of £3000.
This new fund has been specifically set up for B&B businesses that don’t have a business bank account.
Commenting Mr Hendry said:
“I am delighted with that these small and vital businesses will now be able to access this new fund.
“This support will go a long way to help many of our local B&B proprietors, who through no fault of their own had thus far missed out on additional financial support.
“Over these past weeks, I have been highlighting the ongoing plight of these small business owners to colleagues in the Scottish Government, after receiving many emails from local B&B owners and other micro-businesses about the difficulties they have been experiencing.
“It was clear everyone involved was keen to find a solution to support these businesses, and I am thrilled the Cabinet Secretary has found a way to ensure these vital micro-businesses are given a lifeline in these difficult times.
“This fund will not replace the money these businesses have lost out on but I know it will help greatly and is a welcome step forward for these business owners.
“I know everyone will be working round the clock at the Highland Council to ensure this money is in the pockets of B&B proprietors and other business owners as soon as possible.”