A soft play centre owner has warned his “business is going down the pan”, as he demanded financial support from the Scottish Government.
Craig Meikle, who runs Saltire Soft Play in Mayfield, Midlothian, questioned why his business has still not been allowed to open when the guidance states children under 12 do not have to socially distance, and hit out at ministers for overlooking the sector when it came to funding.
He made the plea in an emotional video on social media, which has been watched more than 400,000 times since being posted on Thursday afternoon.
Mr Meikle said his business is only weeks away from closing down for good, having been shut since the original lockdown was enforced in March.
He said he has not received a penny in Government funding, while claiming other similar facilities had been allowed to reopen and make money.
Mr Meikle said: “The Scottish Government are still treating us with utter disdain. We’ve now been closed for over seven months.
“I’m watching my business go down the pan so the very least I deserve is an explanation as to why we have to remain closed while other businesses are allowed to be open.”
He added the Government has failed to provide him with guidance, despite asking ministers continually for advice on reopening for seven months.
UsForThem Scotland, a group of parents who campaign for the welfare of children, said the centres are “hugely important” for the wellbeing of youngsters.
Jo Bisset, from the group, said: “It’s astonishing the centre hasn’t been given any financial assistance, but the best way to keep these places going is to let them open their doors and do business.
“These centres are hugely important for the wellbeing and socialisation of children, and also provide an outlet for parents, many of whom have been stuck inside struggling for months.”