Small businesses in Scotland have voiced opposition to a move by Scottish MPs to declare St Andrew’s Day (November 30) an extra bank holiday.

A bill was raised by Independent MSP Dennis Canavan and signed by 76 cross-party MSPs. A survey of more than 1,000 companies by business pressure group the Forum of Private Business (FPB) revealed more than half (56%) felt their business could not afford another holiday and 48% believed its introduction would have a negative impact on trading. FPB Scottish campaign co-ordinator Alison Beer said the survey showed Scottish MPs were out of touch with the view of Scotland’s business sector.

Linda Williams, who runs the Broadway Star Supermarket in Edinburgh with her husband Dennis, said: “Public holidays are bad for trade. I’d prefer everyone to have the same bank holidays rather than all the national differences. Standardisation would be the way forward, although I feel a bit disloyal saying it. St Andrew’s Day isn’t massive in Scotland.”