Workers at a popular Edinburgh hotel have been left out of a job just days before Christmas.
A handful of staff turned up for shifts at the Cramond Brig bar and restaurant to unexpectedly discover the Queensferry Road venue was shut.
A sign had been put up in the window informing customers the pub will be closed for Christmas and re-opening next year “under new ownership”.
Waitress Dayna Binnie, who had worked at the Brig since August, took to social media to vent her frustration at being left suddenly unemployed.
She described it as a “dreadful day”, tweeting: “Anyone know of any jobs going? Really desperate.”
Customers who have made £75 Christmas lunch bookings have been told the event had been cancelled and that deposits will be refunded.
However, the Brig’s official website was still promoting Hogmanay and New Year’s Day meal packages as of yesterday.
Craigleith banker Stephen Miller, 37, told of his disgust after getting a call to tell him his Christmas lunch booking for four, including his wife and two daughters, had been cancelled.
He said: “They said they had been bought over by someone else and it was closing with immediate effect.
“We’d paid upfront and they refunded the amount to my card.
“We’re disappointed obviously by the way it’s happened, but it’s worse for the staff.
“Anyone there is out of a job in the run-up to Christmas, which isn’t great.”
A Cramond resident said shocked staff were “disgusted”.
The local said: “They turned up in expectation of coming into work.
“That was it – the place was locked.
“Then they discovered that the business had been sold.”
Former owner Rod Spinks had taken over the business about two years ago.
He carried out extensive refurbishments on the building situated on Edinburgh’s western outskirts.
He did not return calls from the Evening News but a venue spokesman confirmed the Brig had ceased trading last Wednesday.
He denied staff had not been informed of the sale and would not confirm the identity of the buyer. He added: “It is a massive opportunity for the area – it’s really good news.”
Cramond Community Council chairman Andrew Mather said the popular meeting spot will be sorely missed.
He said: “I feel very sorry for the staff, but I feel very sorry all round.
“It is about the only outlet we’ve got of that type in Cramond and Barnton, so that’d potentially be a great loss to the community.”
Edinburgh Western MSP Colin Keir, who was also a regular customer at the Brig, described being out of work at Christmas as “dreadfully bad” for those involved.