Nicola Sturgeon: Scottish Government will consider how to support Edinburgh Zoo

Nicola Sturgeon has said the Scottish Government will continue to consider how to support organisations like Edinburgh Zoo.

By Gary Flockhart
Thursday, 19th November 2020, 4:45 pm

Edinburgh Western Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton raised the issue at First Minister’s Questions in the Scottish Parliament, asking if more emergency funding can be extended to Edinburgh Zoo.

Mr Cole-Hamilton said: “The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland have signalled that a number of their staff have now entered the redundancy process. Put simply, the continuing restrictions on travel in and out of Edinburgh caused by its Level 3 status are a body-blow to Edinburgh Zoo’s pathway to recovery.

“They simply cannot sustain month after month of a reduced footfall while we wait for the vaccine.

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Nicola Sturgeon says the Scottish Government will continue to consider how to support organisations like Edinburgh Zoo.

“Parliament saved the zoo once, so will the Scottish Government back the investment made by this chamber to extend emergency funding to tide them through the winter months?”

Mr Sturgeon replied: “The Scottish Government will continue to consider how we support Edinburgh Zoo and other organisations.

“I think while recognising the difficulties that many members are raising, we’ve all got to be very clear that it is not the restrictions that are causing this harm, it is the virus that is causing the harm.

“Therefore, we have to control the virus in order to minimise the harm to the economy and other organisations – that is really difficult for people to accept and grasp.

"This is a horrendously difficult situation, but that is the fundamental truth at the heart of this challenge that we are going through right now.

“We will continue to look at how we help those bearing the burden – and that will undoubtedly include Edinburgh Zoo.”

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