Levels of support for Holyrood hospitality facilities leaves 'extremely bad taste in the mouth'

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Levels of support for Scottish Government political hospitality facilities Holyrood leaves 'extremely bad taste in the mouth'

Related tags Scotland Hospitality Coronavirus Government

MSPs in Scotland have subsidised their own hospitality to the tune of £680,000 since the pandemic began, compared to estimated average support of £40,000 for privately-owned pubs and restaurants.

The figures, highlighted by the Scottish Hospitality Group (SHG), are contained in quarterly reports on the level of financial support required to run the catering services at Holyrood. 

Based on the data political hospitality facilities have received 17-times-more financial support than private sector businesses, according to the SHG.

“This scandalous news will be impossible to stomach for those working in the hospitality sector," says spokesperson Stephen Montgomery.

"It’s the very definition of the self-serving behaviour that gives the political classes such a bad name.   

“It’s revealing that politicians do understand after all how much help struggling hospitality operations need. But the level of taxpayers’ money given to their own facilities is genuinely unbelievable compared to the amount we’ve had to beg for over many months and it all leaves us with an extremely bad taste in the mouth.

“Candidates for Holyrood would do well to reflect on their positions about this issue as they face the electorate, especially those whose jobs and livelihoods depend on a thriving hospitality sector.” 

Earlier this month a freedom of information request by the SHG revealed the Scottish Government had not produced or sourced any specific evidence to support the restrictions​ on Scotland’s hospitality sector.

At the time the SHG, which comprises many of the country’s largest and best-known restaurant and bar businesses, described the news as 'deeply disappointing'.

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