The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Friday, 24 April 2009

Holiday home owners are Budget losers

PROPOSALS in the Budget, if enacted, will unfairly disadvantage self-catering holiday home operators across the UK, claims a leading Ayrshire chartered accountant.

Andrew Sinclair (pictured above) is a partner at Ayr-based Sinclair Scott Chartered Accountants. He points out that businesses which let out furnished holiday properties currently enjoy the same treatment as a normal trade for taxation purposes. Loss relief, business assets, rollover, business property relief, capital expenditure and earnings rules are the same as for any other small business.

However, due to a suggestion that the current legislation may not be compliant with European Law, the proposal in the Budget is to end rules for furnished holiday lets from 2010. These businesses will be treated as if they are operating ordinary property rentals, which will have a significant negative financial impact on the sector as normal business trading benefits will no longer be available.

Andrew Sinclair, who is also a member of the Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers, says: “This is fundamentally unfair, as many furnished holiday lets are run very much as ‘hands-on’ businesses, and in that respect do not differ from bed and breakfast or hotel accommodation.”

David Smythe, chairman of the Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers (ASSC), added: “In a time when the Government should be doing more to promote and assist the indigenous tourism industry, these changes are extremely unwelcome. This proposal was not consulted on, and seems to be applying a sledgehammer to crack a nut. We will be lobbying hard to have this proposed change amended.”

Andrew Sinclair has written a paper about the Budget changes affecting furnished holiday property owners. Copies can be obtained from Sinclair Scott Chartered Accountants, telephone 01292 288999 or e-mail

For more information contact

David Smythe
Chairman ASSC

Telephone: 01738 840239

Andrew Sinclair
Sinclair Scott Chartered Accountants
3 Wellington Square
Ayr KA7 1EN
Ayrshire, Scotland

Contact: Andrew Sinclair
Tel: 01292 288999
Fax: 01292 272150

The Association of Scotland’s Self-Caterers was formed 30 years ago to promote quality in self-catering. It is the only trade association representing the sector in Scotland.

Membership stands at around 6000 self-catering businesses, or 3000 self-catering properties

ASSC is represented on VisitScotland Trade Overseeing Committee on Quality Standards; Scottish Tourism Forum; Federation of National Self-Catering Organisations; and the Board of the Sector Skills Council, Tourism Framework for Change monitoring, Tourism Intelligence Scotland and other groups. It represents the interests of its members at national level through representation to these bodies and others such as the Enterprise network, the Scottish Government, and the European Commission.

ASSC promotes its Quality Assured members on its website and in publications.


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Tuesday, 21 April 2009

South Ayrshire Council focus on improvement programme

SOUTH AYRSHIRE COUNCIL has acknowledged the past weaknesses in its performance and financial management inherited from previous administrations, highlighted today by the Accounts Commission, and is well under way with a radical change and improvement programme aimed at addressing the main areas of concern.

Councillor Hugh Hunter, Leader of South Ayrshire Council (pictured above) said: “We are firmly focused on a radical change and improvement programme which will address the main findings of the Accounts Commission.

“The weaknesses in the report are not unfamiliar to us, and reflect areas where we have already been taking action since the new council was established in May 2007. This has included establishing more effective cross-party working, the appointment of new senior officers, including a new chief executive, and taking difficult and sometimes unpopular decisions to start addressing the significant financial pressures which we face.

“Councillors of all parties recognised the difficulties that we faced, and we have begun to better manage how we deliver services and how we report our performance, and have begun to develop community planning and joint working with partners and neighbouring councils.

“We note that the Commission acknowledges that we are facing a significant number of hard decisions for the future, and that we have the appetite for change and a strong commitment to the challenges we face.”

The Audit of Best Value and Community Planning which includes the Accounts Commission’s findings will be discussed at a future meeting of the Council.

A PDF copy of the Audit of Best Value and Community Planning, including the Accounts Commission’s findings can be downloaded from the Council’s web site at from today.



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Hello Bud wows 16,000 Coral Scottish Grand National crowd

By: Iain Ferguson

PADDY, Nigel and Bud were the toast of Ayr on Saturday night when jockey Paddy Brennan steered trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies’s Hello Bud to an all the way win in Saturday’s Coral Scottish Grand National at Ayr Racecourse.

[Click on any image to view / download full-size version.]

A crowd of more than 16,000 packed the course which was bathed in sunshine as the 17 runners battled for Scotland’s richest and most prestigious jumps prize.

And the 11 year old Hello Bud, a 12/1 shot, was a worthy winner as he held off a storming Tony McCoy inspired finish from Gone To Lunch to win by half a length.

After the race Paddy Brennan was in ecstatic mood and said: “What a thrill that was. He just kept battling on. It was a great team effort from everyone connected with the horse. The course was magnificent and a great credit to the ground staff.”

And Nigel Twiston-Davies savouring his third Scottish Grand National added: “He’s done it beautifully and we will now aim him for Aintree next year.”

There was no Scottish trained runner in the race after Merigo was pulled out because of the quick ground, but as a spectacle the 2009 Coral Scottish Grand National will be remembered as one of the best ever.

The crowds took advantage of the great weather to pack the champagne lawns and there was a terrific atmosphere with everyone enjoying the mix of good racing and the sun shining.

Elsewhere over the two days there was some terrific racing and exciting finishes. The main supporting race on Saturday, the Samsung Electronics Scottish Champion Hurdle won by the Nicky Richards trained Noble Alan (17/2). Davy Condon rode a fine race on the grey to win by two lengths from Secret Tune.

There were two big priced winners on Saturday in the first and last races. Apartman landed the opener, the Purvis Marquees Juvenile Novices Hurdle at 22/1. Trained by George Charlton and ridden by Czech jockey Jan Faltejsek the four year-old cruised home by 15 lengths.

In the last race, the Ashleybank Investments National Hunt Flat Race, 50/1 chance Carters Rest won by a length under Harry Haynes for trainer Willie Amos.

Top trainer Nicky Henderson grabbed a double on National day courtesy of The Polomoche (15/2) ridden by Tony McCoy to win the Handicap Hurdle and the Barry Geraghty ridden Pepsyrock (9/4 fav) in the Albert Bartlett and Sons Handicap Chase.

Deep Purple looks to have a good future in chases after landing the Homecoming Future Champion Novices Chase at odds of 15/8 for trainer Evan Williams and jockey Paul Moloney while one of the easiest winners of the meeting was Auroras Encore (17/2) who romped clear under Tijade Collier for trainer Sue Smith to win the Dawn Group Novices Handicap Hurdle by 13 lengths.

Friday’s highlight was Tell Henry’s six length victory in the Hillhouse Quarry Handicap Chase. Ridden by James Reveley and trained by Martin Todhunter the 13/2 chance gained the lead approaching the last and stayed on to win from Calatagan.

Grand Theatre (16/1) was an impressive winner of the Artemis, The Profit Hunter Supporting Poppyscotland Novices Handicap Hurdle in the hands of Davy Condon for trainer Nicky Richards while Even Flo (7/4) outstayed Bougoure to win the John Smith’s Handicap Chase under Jason Maguire for Kim Bailey.

Coral Scottish Grand National winning trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies had a double on Friday with Distiller (6/4 fav) winning the Weatherbys Printing Handicap Hurdle and Andrew Nick (15/8) landing the Opin Systems Claiming Chase. Both were ridden by Paddy Brennan.

Other winners on Friday were Elzahann (15/2) in the Coral Backing Poppyscotland Mares’ Handicap Hurdle for Ferdy Murphy and jockey Keith Mercer and Solway Sunset (20/1) for Lucy Harrison and Ewan Whillans in the West Sound Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle.

Ayr’s next meeting is the opening flat fixture on Thursday May 28. For more information go online at or call 0870-8505666.



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