Commenting on the news that Edinburgh Woollen Mill is set to appoint administrators and that thousands of jobs are at risk nationally, South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth said: “This is a devastating blow for the workforce across Scotland but on a local level alone, there are hundreds employed by the company who will extremely concerned about what the future holds.

“This is a brand fundamentally linked to Langholm and the borders, and even though the company’s headquarters moved to Carlisle, a lot of people from the area still make up the 200-strong workforce in the city. There are many people employed in their chains such as Peacocks across South Scotland also deeply worried about the prospect of closure.

“This is a very difficult time for many businesses, but I am urging the Scottish and UK Governments, local councils and Enterprise Agencies to provide all the support they can over the coming weeks and months to help the firm secure a buyer and to keep jobs in our area.”

Annandale East and Eskdale Councillor Archie Dryburgh said: “I hope that a buyer can be found and these jobs secured, but I’ve already spoken with council officers in Dumfries and Galloway and I know they are in discussions with their counterparts in Scottish Borders to see what measures can be put in place to mitigate the impact should there be any jobs losses.

“I will also be urging cross border talks with Carlisle and Cumbria councils because there are many people on both sides of the border who are employed by EWM.

“Our thoughts are very much with all staff affected at this time. No stone should be left unturned to help secure a future for a workforce who in many cases have given years of loyal services to the company.”

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