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Formartine’s fails to make it to ‘Happy Monday’ – flood damage was the final straw


Formartine’s Visitor Centre, near Tarves,  Aberdeenshire, has ceased trading, with the loss of 12 jobs.

Significant flood damage earlier this year was the final straw, on top of its enforced closure due to Covid-19, and the business was put into liquidation on April 23.

Its fate was sealed just a few days before Scotland’s so-called “Happy Monday”, ushering in relaxation of lockdown rules for a swathe of businesses.

Gordon MacLure, restructuring partner at accountants and business advisers Johnston Carmichael, has been appointed provisional liquidator.

‘No longer viable’

Mr MacLure said: “Formartine’s Visitor Centre has been hit hard by mounting economic difficulties in recent years, with everything from changes in retail to Covid-19 adversely impacting on cash flow and debt levels.

“Recent flood damage compounded the situation, and the members reluctantly concluded the business is no longer viable.

“Our immediate focus is to ensure all staff receive their entitlements as soon as possible and we are liaising with government agencies to ensure all possible support is available at this difficult time.”

Site to be sold

He added: “The centre is a fantastic resource, located in a beautiful environment, and we’re hopeful of being able to find a buyer who recognises the opportunity presented by the site.”

The visitor centre, featuring a restaurant, food hall, woodland walks and adventure play area, opened in April 2012 and quickly scooped a Gold Green Tourism Award.

It was a joint partnership between John Cooper – owner
of The Smokehouse at Methlick – and Lord and Lady Aberdeen of Haddo Estate.

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