Loss of Selkirk garage and 23 jobs deemed a “huge shock” for the town

The loss of 23 jobs at Selkirk’s Leven Car Company dealership has been described as “disappointing” news for the town.

Thursday, 16th January 2020, 9:35 am
Updated Thursday, 16th January 2020, 9:57 am
Leven Car Company in Selkirk.

The Dunsdale Haugh garage and showroom went into administration last week, but there were hopes that a buyer for it, and the company’s other two dealerships in Edinburgh, could be found.

But after a week of uncertainty, the firm’s 23 staff at the Selkirk dealership, which acquired the franchises for Kia and Suzuki in Selkirk from previous owners the Belmont Group in March 2018, were told it had been closed with immediate effect.

Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar said the garage’s closure had come as a huge blow for the town.

“It’s very disappointing,” he said. “I had high hopes for the firm when it came into Selkirk as they really looked to promote the garage, and I thought they were really doing well.

“They had a huge stock of new cars and they seemed to be moving them all on.

“I am conscious that there’s quite a number of folk that have been made redundant. It would come as quite a surprise to them as it looked like things were going fine.

“It’s also leaving a prominent empty building on the entrance to the town, which is a shame, but I am hoping we can turn it around and get something in there quickly.

“Right now, my thoughts are with those people who have lost their jobs, and with their families.”

Borders MP John Lamont added: “This is devastating news for those who have lost their jobs and for their families. No doubt many of their loyal customers will be devastated as well.

“This is especially disappointing when Selkirk is seeing a revival elsewhere in the town.

“As I said last week, those who lost their jobs should feel free to contact me and I will do my best to help.

“I know that Scottish Borders Council have put in place some plans to help as well”

A local authority spokesman added: “We are working with Skills Development Scotland and other partners to ensure that employees receive Partnership Action for Continuing Employment support as soon as possible.”

There is some interest in the city branches, but Leonard Curtis Business Rescue and Recovery, the Glasgow-firm put in charge of the attempted rescue, says there has been only limited interest expressed in the Selkirk one.

Joint administrators Stuart Robb and Michelle Elliot, of Leonard Curtis say they are continuing to adopt a hold strategy across the company’s remaining sites in Corstorphine and Sighthill whilst discussions with interested parties are held.

Mr Robb said “We appreciate that this is disappointing news for the staff based at Selkirk. Our focus is to ensure that those employees affected by redundancy there receive the best support possible.

“We’re working with Partnership Action for Continuing Employment to support them.”