One of Scotland’s best known craft breweries fears new restrictions on openings means it’s terminal time for many of the country’s pubs.

Harviestoun Brewery joint managing director Stuart Cook said the new rules are damaging to pubs and breweries already on their knees.

The restrictions will see the pub lights turned off in 11 council areas across western and central Scotland, including Glasgow, East Dunbartonshire, East Renfrewshire, Renfrewshire, West Dunbartonshire, North and South Lanarkshire, East and South Ayrshire, Stirling and West Lothian.

CAMRA Scotland’s director Joe Crawford, pictured outside Edinburgh, Lothian and the Borders branch’s pub of the year, said pubs across Scotland will be devastated by the new restrictions on their businesses.

Joe said: “Many publicans are understandably worried about how and when these restrictions will end and whether they will be able to survive the tough weeks and months ahead.

“We urgently need a long-term, sector- specific support package to help our locals – and the breweries that serve them – survive the winter.

“Lockdowns and restrictions across all tiers has decimated trade and knocked long-term consumer confidence in pubs as a safe, Covid-secure place to meet.

“Entering the highest tier is putting more local pubs in an untenable position to make it through this crisis. Simply put, without greater financial support, we risk seeing hundreds of Scottish pubs and breweries close their doors for good.”

The new restrictions mean non-essential pubs, restaurants and shops will have to close until 11 December.

● In Northern Ireland pubs are closing from 27 November to 11 December

CAMRA chair of NI Ruth Sloan said: “Whilst we all understand the need to control the virus, this announcement comes as a bitter blow to pubs and pub goers in the run up to what would be their busiest time of year.

“The current financial support for pubs just isn’t enough to save many of them from permanent closure. The Executive must urgently bring forward a long-term, sector-specific support package to help pubs and the breweries that serve them survive.”

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