BUSINESSES across Scotland have come together to call on Theresa May to abandon any thoughts of a hard Brexit after the General Election ended in a hung parliament.

Business for Scotland (BfS), the business group and economic policy think tank, say hundreds of its members have signed a declaration demanding the Prime Minister rethinks her Brexit strategy.

"Scottish businesses need single market membership and not just second rate access," BfS said, adding: “Theresa May’s loss of majority and diminished mandate is a clear rejection of the hard Brexit on which she campaigned during this election. She needs to go back to the drawing board on Brexit.”

BfS are writing to all the party leaders in Scotland, calling on them to rethink Brexit and to back a soft Brexit with ongoing membership of the single market and, crucially, “a special deal for Scotland must be back in play if the UK won't stay in the single market.”

The economic think tank have reiterated concerns over a hard Brexit, claiming: “Employment in Scotland will be cut by 80,000 jobs. Scotland's economic growth will be reduced by £8 billion and real wages will fall by £2,000 per person per year.”