Hotel in Scotland

Scotland's Hotel Recovery Programme

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As the hospitality sector continues its recovery from COVID-19 the Scottish Government has announced details of a £14m funding package to support Scotland’s hotels.

What is it?

The £14 million Hotel Recovery Programme comprises of £9 million revenue and £5 million capital which will help to secure up to 3,000 jobs in Scotland’s larger hotels until the start of the summer 2021 tourism season.

Eligible businesses can apply for individual grants of up to £250,000 in addition to a suite of wrap-around business support and advice. The Programme will be jointly administered by the Scottish Government’s enterprise agencies and builds on the existing funding and support for tourism businesses through the Creative, Tourism and Hospitality Hardship Fund and the Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund.

Who is it for?

This support programme is for larger hotels in Scotland (as defined by the eligibility criteria) that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Can I Apply?

You can apply for support for multiple hotels, however, If only some of your hotels meet the criteria you can still apply for those hotels that meet the criteria.

To be eligible, each hotel you’re applying for must:

  • be based in Scotland (although your company does not need to be based in Scotland)
  • have been operating since before 31 December 2019
  • have a rateable value over £51,000. If you’re not sure, you can check your hotel’s rateable value on the Scottish Assessors Association website.
  • employ at least 50 employees. Employee numbers should be based on your average number of individual employees (not full time equivalent) over your last full financial year, not including contractors or agency staff.
  • provide jobs that are critical to the local economy and the recovery of the tourism sector. For example, through direct employment, use of local supply chains, engagement with local businesses and a commitment to quality and standards through participation in recognised quality schemes.

If you operate multiple hotels within a tight geographic area that collectively employ over 50 employees who are shared across more than one hotel unit, these hotels may still be eligible. At least one of these hotels needs to have a rateable value of over £51,000.

As well as the above criteria for your hotels, your company must also meet certain eligibility criteria. If you’re part of a group, these criteria apply to the full group.

Your company must:

  • NOT have reached the maximum State Aid allowance. You'll find more information about this under 'Important information'
  • NOT be based in a tax haven. This means your company cannot be incorporated or otherwise based in a tax haven, and, if part of a group, none of the group’s subsidiaries can be based in a tax haven.
  • be willing to engage with agency partners and share business data and information with them. The partners involved will follow strict confidentiality practices when handling this information and it will only be shared with authorised partners. You can read more in our privacy policy. If you cannot commit to this, you will not be able to take part in the programme.

Meeting the eligibility criteria does not guarantee that you’ll receive funding.

What does it cost?

It’s free to apply for this programme. Any funding awarded will be offered as a grant that you don’t need to repay. Any other support included within your package will be free – however, to achieve the outcomes set out by the programme, you may be expected to make investments into your hotel.

When and how can I apply?

Expressions of interest are being received until 5pm on 9 September 2020 and will be assessed after 9 September 2020.

Funding and other support will be delivered to successful companies on an ongoing basis from October 2020 until March 2021. 

Summary of next steps

  1. Step 1 – submit an expression of interest. August 2020 – September 2020.
    If you’re interested in this programme and are confident that your company and the hotels you’re applying for meet ALL of the eligibility criteria, you can submit an expression of interest. 
  2. Step 2 – eligibility checks and confirmation. September 2020.
    The appropriate agency will conduct some checks to make sure you meet the criteria and will be in touch to confirm whether or not you can proceed to the next step.
  3. Step 3 – appraisal and due diligence. September 2020 – October 2020.
    The agency will work with your company to gather evidence to appraise your application and conduct any required due diligence.
  4. Step 4 – design a bespoke package. September 2020 – October 2020.
    The agency will work with other partners to design a bespoke package of support to help you meet the programme outcomes.
  5. Step 5 – offer, award and delivery of support programme. October 2020 – March 2021.
    The agency will make a formal offer. They’ll aim to tell you as soon as possible what support you’ll be receiving (including the amount of grant funding) and when it will be delivered. Funding and other support may be delivered over a set of milestones in line with your individual hotel needs.

Click here to complete your expression of Interest before 5pm on 9 September 2020. 

If you have a question about this programme, please contact us and we'd be happy to help.


To submit your expression of interest for the programme follow the link below, or get in touch with Martin Johnston on 0141 233 0710 or email at Martin.Johnston@armstrongwatson.co.uk for help and advice.

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