Commenting on the proposed closure of Visitor Information Centre’s by VisitScotland, South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth said:
“I am deeply saddened by this decision and in many ways it’s the end of an era. You know when you go into a Tourist Information Centre you get a fantastic service from staff, with comprehensive, impartial advice . However, I appreciate that the way most people now access information has changed and the footfall figures speak for themselves, so no one will be surprised at this decision particularly given the squeeze on funding from the Government.
Visitors access information continuously whether that’s at their accommodation or at visitor attractions and of course online where more and more bookings are being made. That’s no consolation for the staff who face losing their jobs and my thoughts are very much with them. I’ve spoken to VisitScotland to express my concern over the impact on staff and whilst they have given a commitment to no compulsory redundancies, clearly geography will make it challenging for staff to access new opportunities within the organisation. If you have family ties and other commitments , it’s not easy to suddenly move to find employment. It’s therefore vital for VisitScotland to give as much support as possible for people to access not only opportunities within the organisation but to find other local employment opportunities”.