An Lanntair Trading Limited, which operated the cafe and shop at An Lanntair Arts Centre in the centre of Stornoway, has gone into liquidation.

Gordon MacLure, restructuring partner at Johnston Carmichael, has been appointed liquidator.

The business closed due to Covid 19 restrictions in mid-March before being placed into liquidation on April 28.

All 21 staff who worked for the company have been made redundant.

The company was a subsidiary of the local charity, An Lanntair Limited, which runs the arts centre. The board of the arts centre is already exploring plans to reopen the business as a community facility, with hopes to create new jobs for local people once social restrictions are eased.

Liquidator Gordon MacLure said: “The unprecedented strain placed on the business, caused by the enforced closure of the restaurant due to the Covid-19 pandemic, has proved too great and the directors concluded that the business was no longer viable.

"Our immediate focus is to ensure that all the staff receive their entitlements as soon as possible. We will be liaising with the various government agencies, including PACE, to make sure these employees receive all possible support at this difficult time.

“Unfortunately, as long as the Covid-19 restrictions remain in place it can be expected that many businesses throughout the Western Isles, and the UK as a whole, will find ongoing trading increasingly
challenging meaning further business failures are almost inevitable.

“An Lanntair itself is now looking to the future of the arts centre and all its charitable work across this community.  In the coming weeks, it will look at options for establishing a future catering offer from
the centre and will look at ways to create crucial new employment for local people once the centre can again open its doors.”

Founded in 1936, Johnston Carmichael has grown to become the largest independent firm of Chartered Accountants and Business Advisers in Scotland. It is one of the UK’s top 20 accountancy firms and is the PKF member firm in Scotland, a family of legally independent member firms with over 400 offices, operating in 150 countries. Committed to Corporate Social Responsibility and engagement in charity fund-raising, Johnston Carmichael is recognised as an employer of choice, with more than 850 staff and partners.