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Seven tourist hotels across Scotland cease trading


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Richard Hoare/Geograph

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Shearings Holidays is part of the group

Seven Scottish hotels have ceased trading after a major UK travel firm went into administration.

About 2,500 jobs have been lost and 64,000 bookings cancelled with the collapse of Specialist Leisure Group.

The hotel and travel company included well-known coach holiday brands Shearings, Caledonian Travel and Wallace Arnold.

Travel body Abta said the firm had struggled to provide refunds for trips cancelled because of Covid-19.

It added that the vast majority of cancelled bookings were coach package holidays and customers with these bookings will receive a full refund.

The hotels in Scotland which, according to a statement by the joint administrators, have ceased trading are:

  • Bay Highland Hotel in Strathpeffer
  • Bay Great Western Hotel in Oban
  • Bay Tarbet Hotel at Loch Lomond
  • Bay Caledonian Hotel in Fort William
  • Bay Waverley Castle Hotel in Melrose
  • Pitlochry Hydro Hotel in Perthshire
  • Portpatrick Hotel in Dumfries and Galloway

The Specialist Leisure Group, based in Wigan, also operated Wallace Arnold Travel and accommodation brands such as Bay Hotels, Coast and Country Hotels and Country Living Hotels.

The firm said on its website that all tours, cruises, holidays and hotel breaks had been cancelled and would not be rescheduled, blaming the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

‘Very sad day’

John de Vial, Abta’s director of membership and financial services, said: „Today is a very sad day for these customers and the thousands of staff who will have lost their jobs.

„The fact that two such well-known brands with a loyal customer base have had to call in administrators is a stark indication of the pressure that the holiday industry is under as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

„Abta has repeatedly highlighted to the government the urgency of the situation and the need to set out a co-ordinated strategy with clearer communication if it wants to help avoid significant job losses and support companies to weather the storm.“



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