A new website, launched on Wednesday for businesses in the wedding industry sector to apply for government funding, was hit by a series of technical problems within minutes of going live.
The £25 million Scottish Wedding Industry Fund allows companies whose revenues have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic to apply for up to £25,000 grants provided certain criteria are met.
It is open to caterers, celebrants, events supply businesses, florists and stylists, jewellery designers and photographers, among others.
The Enterprise Scotland site went live at noon and experienced problems almost immediately, as it appears the sheer number of applicants overwhelmed the IT infrastructure, with business owners taking to social media to vent their frustrations about problems uploading the required documents and the pages freezing.
“I’ve been on this form now for 98 minutes, had all my documents ready to go and I’ve now been stuck on the “Submit Application” for 45 minutes,” wrote one user. “On a first come first serve basis, this is pretty frustrating to say the least.”
Get so far through the application, the forms freeze and you try to restart and its closed again… NOT IMPRESSED
— Andrew McDermid (@McGrump24) January 28, 2021
Many of the concerns were related to the first come, first served nature of the funding scheme with applicants worried they might miss out on grants if they were not able to complete the process successfully online in the immediate hours after the website was launched.
‘Some technical issues’
A spokesperson for the enterprise agencies says: “Over 10,000 users visited the Scottish Wedding Industry Fund’s online application form within the first few hours of it going live.
“Some users initially experienced some technical issues, which were investigated immediately and are now resolved.
“The majority of those that experienced issues have now completed their application, and we’d like to reassure applicants that their submissions are not disadvantaged because of these early technical issues.”
Not all applicants were hit with tech problems, as businesses in the Highlands and Islands were able to upload their funding applications use a dedicated website without experiencing any issues.