SCOTTISH film makers are losing confidence with efforts to build a national film studio with one leading producer branding the failure to build one a 'national disgrace.'

Willy Wands, who has been behind films and TV shows such as Whisky Galore, Jonathan Strange, Rebus, The Magdalene Sisters, is part of a group lobbying for the move which is becoming increasingly disillusioned.

After three years and at a cost of £60,000, the Film Studio Delivery Group involving the Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and Creative Scotland, has failed to have a studio plan approved.

Mr Wands, a member of the lobby group, the Association of Film and Television Practitioners Scotland (AFTPS), would like to see the revival of a dedicated screen body such as Scottish Screen.

The producer, who claimed many members have lost patience, said: "We don't have any stages in Scotland and that is a national disgrace.

"Basically we are concerned that there is a lack of transparency with the studio [delivery group], a lack of transparency between Creative Scotland and Scottish Enterprise, and we are concerned that because of this, there is a conflict of interest and they are not going to give the Pentlands plan a fair crack of the whip."

A wholly private bid to build a £140 million Pentlands Studio complex in Straiton, south of Edinburgh, is now being considered for planning permission by ministers and a decision is due in April.

Mr Wands has been briefed on the Pentland Studios plan, which has no public money involved, and believes "they have thought of everything" and its business case looks sound.

The government has released no details on its own public/private plan for a studio, understood to be in Cumbernauld.

There is also considerable disquiet over the lack of information given this week at Scottish Parliament's Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee of by Janet Archer, chief executive, and Natalie Usher, director of Film and Media, of Creative Scotland, and David Smith, director of Creative Industries at Scottish Enterprise.

The AFTPS has told the Scottish Parliament in a new letter: "Delays, deferred decisions and vacillating only serve to show that Scotland is not open for business."

In its latest statement, the government said it is still looking for private investors.

In the letter, film makers have written to Murdo Fraser, convener of the Economy, Energy and Tourism committee.

In it the AFPTS notes that Wales has two studios with six stages, and Northern Ireland also has two major studios with six stages and with plans for more studios in development.

It adds: "Scotland, a country that has a greater population and over double the land mass of Wales and Northern Ireland combined, has none."

It says of the Straiton plans: "We remain confused as to why, after Scottish Enterprise have repeatedly warned about State Aid being a block to developing a studio with public money, that a company offering to build a studio complex with private money would not be seen immediately as a development of national significance.

"There still fails to be any notable announcements to be made by the Studio Delivery Group for any kind of national film studio, and we suspect that the public sector is waiting to see whether the Pentland bid will be successful."

Dr Belle Doyle, freelance film and TV locations expert, said: "I'm frustrated by the lack of transparency from the Studio Delivery Group.

"There is no need to shroud everything in secrecy: in fact, the future health of this entire industry depends on us working together and keeping all the channels of communication open."

A government spokesman said the Film Delivery Group was "determined to do whatever we can, within EU State Aid rules, to deliver enhanced film studio facilities in Scotland."

He added: "A public-private proposal with the potential to meet this aspiration is currently at a critical stage of consideration, and we remain open to proposals from other potential investors."

He added: "The Pentland Film Studio has been called in for consideration by Ministers. We are unable to comment further as this is a live appeal."