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Scottish Government Support for the Tourism and Events Sector

(VisitScotland) – At the end of last year, the Scottish Government announced that tourism and hospitality businesses across Scotland were to benefit from a £104.3 million Scottish Government package.

This funding will help a number of tourism and events businesses in key sectors who have received little or no support so far.

We will be administering nine* of the Scottish Government funds and will move our focus from marketing to funding and support for the next three months to ensure that desperately needed help is delivered quickly, to those most in need.

We have moved more than 100 staff from other tasks to get these funding streams organised and process them as quickly as possible.

We will announce more details about how to apply on in due course, but our aim is to have all funds launched by mid-February.

Funds we’re delivering on behalf of Scottish Government

  • Pivotal Event Businesses Fund – in progress, closed to Expressions of Interest .
  • The Sector Destination Operational & Market Readiness Fund – live
  • Scotland Inbound Tour Operators – COVID-19 Business Support and Continuity Fund – Expressions of interest open 22 January
  • Outdoor Fund, which has two strands: marine tourism and outdoor tourism – last week of January
  • Event Industry Support Fund – late January/early February
  • Coach Operators Fund – first week of February
  • Visitor attractions Fund – week commencing 8 February
  • Hostels Fund – week commencing 15 February

These nine* funds present a clean sheet – so those who have had COVID-19 related funding before can apply again.  A business bank account will not be required – although evidence of running a business will.

Information about the funds will be communicated across the industry and with partners and you can find information on how to apply for each of these funds as they go live from our financial support for businesses webpage.

* The Outdoor Fund has two strands, combined with the other funds that brings the figure to nine.

We understand how tough things are for the tourism and events industry at the moment and know that the impact of the ongoing pandemic is making business survival increasingly difficult. There is therefore a need to deliver funding as quickly as possible.

We have huge sympathy for businesses across Scotland, and we continue to feed concerns back to the Scottish Government through the Scottish Tourism Emergency Response Group – which we chair – and the Event Industry Advisory Group in the hope that more support will be made available in the future.Riddell Graham, Director of Industry & Destination Development

All of the funding packages are being delivered with input from the tourism industry and sector groups to ensure we get the right support to the right people.

A thriving tourism and events industry is essential to lead Scotland’s pandemic recovery. It is a force for good by not only providing jobs and economic benefits to every corner of the country, but also bringing benefits to our wellbeing and society.

Should you have any questions, please get in touch on

Scottish Government Funds

In addition to the Scottish Governments Strategic Framework Business Fund, there are additional funds to target financial support at those businesses and sectors that are not eligible.

This is a list of these funds – including the nine funds being administered by VisitScotland.

These targeted grant schemes are now live:

  • Taxi and Private Hire Fund
  • Creative Freelancer Hardship Fund
  • Museums Recovery and Resilience Fund Top up
  • Travelling Show People Support Fund
  • Culture Collective Fund
  • Youth Arts Access Fund
  • Creative Communities
  • Sector and Destination Operational and Market Readiness Fund 
  • Scotland Pivotal Event Business Fund

Funds going live this month:

  • Mobile Close Contact Services Support Fund including driving instructors and hairdressers
  • Newly Self-Employed Hardship Fund
  • Outdoor Tourism Sector Recommissioning Fund
  • Travel Agents Fund
  • Wedding Sector Support Fund
  • Events Industry Support Fund
  • Grassroots Music Venue Stabilisation Fund
  • Brewer Support Fund
  • Indoor Football Centres Fund

Funds due to go live in February are:

  • Scotland Inbound Tour Operators
  • Visitor Attractions Fund
  • Ski Centre Support Fund
  • Visitor Accommodation Hostels Fund
  • Large (seven or more guests) Self-Catering Grant
  • Exclusive Use Grant Self-Catering

Further information announced for larger self-catering properties and B&Bs

Details of support for larger self-catering properties and B&Bs paying council tax have been confirmed by Tourism Secretary Fergus Ewing.

The £7 million Large Self-Catering Grant and the Exclusive Use Grant was announced as part of the £104 million tourism and hospitality package in December.

Eligible self–catering businesses will be able to apply for one off grant support of £2,000. Eligible exclusive use premises will be able to apply for £10,000 in grant support.

All self-catering properties, B&Bs and guest houses that are eligible at level four for Non Domestic Rates relief can now apply to the Strategic Framework Business Fund, which provides grants for businesses required to close by law as a result of COVID-19 restrictions. In most cases this will be payments of £2,000 every four weeks.

It has been confirmed that support equivalent to the Strategic Framework Business Fund will also now be available to B&Bs which do not pay Non Domestic Rates but pay council tax. This support will be paid by local authorities.

Details of how to access the Large Self-Catering Grant and the Exclusive Use Grant, and support for B&Bs paying Council tax rather than NDR, will be published in Find Business Support shortly. 

Read the full story.

Source: VisitScotland