PUBLICANS, bar staff and restaurateurs in Dumfries and Galloway are among 400 signatories of a petition to save Scottish hospitality.
They have put their name to an open letter to the First Minister, Humza Yousaf, calling for more industry support.
And they warn that without it, many Scottish hospitality businesses will struggle to survive.
The Save Scottish Hospitality campaign calls on the Scottish Government to use the Scottish Budget to provide emergency support for the hospitality industry to survive, and a new long-term deal to support the sector to thrive.
Stephen Montgomery, above, from Our Place in Annan is the director of the Scottish Hospitality Group.
He said: “This letter is an urgent plea from hospitality owners and workers from the length and breadth of Scotland. The First Minister must listen to those on the frontline of our hospitality sector and deliver support to save our hospitality sector before many of the venues we love disappear forever.”
“We need to back our hospitality industry to survive and thrive, and a fairer deal on business rates would be one step the Government can take in the Budget to give our hospitality industry a fighting chance. If it can be done for hospitality businesses in England, then it can be done for Scottish hospitality too.
“The Scottish Government claims it wants a new relationship with the business community. It’s time to put their money where their mouth is.”
The local signatories are: Stephen Montgomery and Ally McDowall, Our Place Annan; Sean Black, The Anglers, Annan; Craig Glendinning, The Royal Bar, Lockerbie; John Pounder, The Queen’s Head, Springfield; Anna and Donald Cruickshank, N’Dulge, Dumfries; Oliver Mackay, Corner House Hotel, Annan; the Coachman Bar, Moffat; Simon Jackson, Masonic Arms, Kirkcudbright; Mary Hamilton, Annan Football Club; Charmaine Kerr, Blue Bell Inn, Annan; Steven Ceates and George McFarlane, The Shed, Annan; Keeley Cooper, The Queensberry, Annan; Dave Smith, The Buccleuch. Moffat; Laggan Outdoor Ltd; The Murray Arms Hotel; GG’s Yard; Gather at Laggan; Kit Carruthers, Ninefold Distillery, Dalton; Chris Walker, The Selkirk Arms Hotel, Kirkcudbright; and Mandy Dalgliesh, Graham Arms, Eastriggs.