People in restaurant

Additional tourism support announced by Scottish Government welcomed by Team South of Scotland

The new Hotel Recovery Programme and further funding for self-catering businesses as announced by Scottish Government today (29 July) has been welcomed by South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE) and partners.

The Hotel Recovery programme will open before the end of August 2020 and consists of a national £14 million support fund from the Scottish Government plus bespoke packages of wrap-around business support provided by Scotland’s enterprise agencies and their partners with the aim of securing jobs in the hotel sector.

Locally in the South of Scotland, SOSE will be administering the fund, working closely with the other Enterprise Agencies, VisitScotland as well as Scottish Borders Council (SBC), Dumfries and Galloway Council and Skills Development Scotland (SDS).  

The announcement today also included a further £1m available for self-catering businesses that have not received any other Scottish Government COVID-19 support to be delivered by VisitScotland.

SOSE Chair, Professor Russel Griggs OBE explained: “We are welcoming the news of this programme today which will not only offer financial support to companies that are vital for tourism in our region, but also look to offer integrated and tailored support in order to help companies build a sustainable future that protects local employment.

“SOSE is here for the long term to do things with the South and for the South and we have always said we are going to help make the region flourish into the future. The announcement today will give us even more opportunity to work in partnership to support the tourism sector and adds to our own recent investment in the South of Scotland Destination Alliance as well as supporting the Twinned with Tourism campaign launched last week between ourselves, SSDA, VisitScotland and the two Councils.”

Councillor Rob Davidson, Depute Leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council said:  “We hope today’s announcement will bring with it more opportunities to help our tourism sector recover and restart safely and sustainably.  We hope this programme will go some way towards supporting the tourism sector’s strategic importance in terms of providing employment, using local supply chains, increasing visitor numbers and supporting the local economy.”

Councillor Mark Rowley, Scottish Borders Council’s Executive Member for Business and Economic Development added: “This is a welcome announcement at a time where we are actively encouraging visitors back to our area through the ‘Twinned with Tourism’ community promise launched last week in partnership with the South of Scotland Destination Alliance as well as the #ScotlandStartsHere campaign.  We know how vital the tourism sector is, and that it goes hand in hand with communities, businesses and our economy.  We hope that eligible businesses in the South of Scotland ensure they apply for the programme when it opens later in August.”

We will begin taking expressions of interest for the Hotel Recovery Programme late August. More information will follow in due course.