Brewgooder, the Scottish non-profit brewer, is saying thanks to the NHS with a "billboard takeover" featuring messages of gratitude and support from people who have donated beer to front line workers.

There are currently 31 billboards south of the Border and it is hoped more will appear in Scotland featuring some of the thousands of messages of appreciation submitted by the public, alongside the 24,000 cans of beer donated to NHS workers leading the fight against Covid-19.

Last month, Brewgooder launched its One on Us campaign - a platform allowing people to donate packs of beer to health service employee - saw in just over for days over 3,000 people donated over 12,000 beers to NHS staff.

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Donations have since doubled to over 6,000 packs and over 24,000 brews. The brewery which has bases in Glasgow and Edinburgh still hopes to get beer to the remaining 16,000 workers that have registered to claim a pack.

James Hughes, head of brand at Brewgooder, said: “The core purpose of the campaign was to provide a way for the British public to show love and appreciation to NHS and healthcare workers across the UK.

"When the guys at Smart Outdoor offered these billboards for the campaign, we felt there was no better use for them than to display genuine messages of support submitted via the campaign by members of the public, which can now be seen by thousands of healthcare workers traveling to or from work to hopefully brighten their day.”

NHS staff were invited to enter their work email into the platform with accompanying delivery details and when they’d like to receive the pack and Brewgooder will issue the contact-free delivery to the recipient’s address. All NHS staff will also be granted a lifetime 20% discount when purchasing any Brewgooder product.

Mr Hughes added: "We never doubted the generosity of the British public but we’ve been blown away by the level of support received for this campaign. From messages of thanks to individual NHS heroes to messages of inspiration and awe to all those frontline workers, it’s clear how much the NHS means to people.

"Social good has always sat at the heart of everything we do, and with the generous support of Smart Outdoor team and their partners, who have provided the billboard spaces, we’ve been able to take the campaign to the next level.”

Mark Catterall, managing director at Smart Outdoor, said: "The Smart Outdoor team are delighted to be able to support this great campaign, thanking our amazing NHS at a time when they are doing so much."

Alongside Smart Outdoor and its partners, MTC Media, Ground Level Up Video Productions and Cordial Fox have also supported the One On Us initiative pro-bono.

Scotland's economy could suffer a more severe hit from coronavirus than the UK and ministers at Holyrood may potentially have to "deprioritise" spending in some areas as they deal with the fallout, MSPs have been told.

Economics expert Mairi Spowage, deputy director of the Fraser of Allander Institute think tank, said the pandemic has highlighted how greater flexibility is needed in Scotland's financial arrangements.

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The fiscal framework was drawn up to help governments in Edinburgh and London deal with Holyrood being given increased powers over income tax.

Ms Spowage warned there could be a negative impact on the Scottish budget "if there is a poorer performance of Scottish tax revenues per head" as a result of Covid-19.

Speaking to MSPs on Holyrood's Finance Committee, she said "on balance" she is of the view that "Scotland is more at risk of having a more severe impact than the UK as a whole".

Key sectors of the Scottish economy, such as North Sea oil and gas and the tourism and hospitality industries, could be amongst those hardest hit, the expert warned.

The oil and gas sector has been "severely impacted" by Covid-19, as people across the world stay at home, with trade body Oil and Gas UK warning up to 20,000 jobs could lost.

Ms Spowage said this would have a "significant impact" on the economy of Scotland's north east - and on Scotland as a whole.

She said the tourism and hospitality sector is "more prevalent in Scotland than the UK as whole, so there is likely to be more impact".

Ms Spowage added: "More importantly these industries are just so key for particular parts of Scotland, so there is likely to be quite a big regional impact, particularly in the Highlands and islands and these sorts of areas who rely heavily on tourism and hospitality spending."

She warned such businesses could be left struggling until spring 2021, saying even if pubs and restaurants are allowed to reopen later this year, people could be "very wary" about returning to them.

These businesses are also the ones that are hit when people are forced to cut down spending if they lose their job or their income is cut, she said.

Looking at dealing with the economic impact of the pandemic, Ms Spowage was clear "there aren't really that many options within the fiscal framework right now to deal with these differential impacts".

The Scotland 5G Centre has made two significant new appointments to lead the recently created organisation. 

Julie Snell has been appointed as chair having recently concluded her role as chief executive and director of Bristol is Open, the city’s smart infrastructure and computer network company. 

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Paul Coffey is taking up the role of chief executive. He brings extensive industry experience to the Scotland 5G Centre, having established his own consultancy practice and previously worked at EE, where he played a key role in establishing the UK’s first deployment of 4G services in rural communities.

The Scotland 5G Centre was set up in October 2019 to accelerate the adoption of 5G and realise its economic and societal potential for Scotland.

Last year, a study by Deloitte estimated that significant changes to wireless technologies in Scotland, including revolutionary 5G networks, could increase GDP by more than £17 billion - equivalent to 8.3% of the country’s total economic output – and create an additional 160,000 new jobs by 2035.

Ms Nell said: “Scotland is in a unique position to create a country-wide platform of great 5G use cases that can prove the commercial viability of 5G products and services from rural, coastal and city areas.

"The Scotland 5G Centre will create a central focus point for everything 5G in Scotland. It has an incredibly important role to play in consolidating and strengthening what is happening across the country, with the support of the Scottish Government.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has shown us how important it is to ensure everyone has access to good quality connectivity."

Mr Coffey said: “Scotland is in a great position to harness the potential of 5G to enable new industries and inject new innovation into the value chain.

"The centre brings together academics, businesses and government allowing people access to expertise that can benefit their organisations and prepare them for the possible.

"It will also enable rapid development and innovation utilising cutting-edge technology in a safe environment, supporting businesses to develop, share and ultimately succeed."

Scotland’s Connectivity Minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “I look forward to working with Julie and Paul as they take up their leadership roles to develop and implement the Scotland 5G Centre and its aims. Digital connectivity is at the heart of Scotland’s economy and communities – the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted just how vital it is for all of us.

“The Scottish Government is investing £5.3m in the Scotland 5G Centre to take forward our 5G strategy, to accelerate the adoption of 5G - particularly in key areas such as healthcare, energy and transport - and to realise its economic and social potential for Scotland. The roles that Julie and Paul will undertake will be key to achieving this and I look forward to engaging closely with them.”