A devastated family has had their holiday plans ruined by an apparent scam in Scotland.

Two children and two adults have lost their holiday after booking through a third party agent Lisa McGuire.

It is particularly upsetting for six-year-old Austin Smith of Flimby who was excited about spending his seventh birthday at the Haven Holiday Craig Tara Holiday Home in Ayr.

Flimby couple Garry Smith and Carrieanne Beasley had no qualms about booking their holiday on social media through agent Lisa McGuire.

Now the couple has discovered that they are among more than 1,000 who claim they have been scammed.

McGuire has allegedly double and triple booked spaces at the Haven Holiday Craig Tara Holiday Home in Ayr.

Police say enquiries are at an early stage after the Facebook group belonging to McGuire was taken down and all contact cut off – leaving caravan owners and customers out of pocket.

Mr Smith, of St Helen’s Drive, Flimby, said his family was bitterly disappointed.

“We were looking forward to this holiday together next May. We haven’t decided what to do instead or if we will do anything. We are waiting to see if we can get our money back.”

A spokesman for Craig Tara said: “We were upset to hear that a small number of people have been duped into purchasing holidays through fraudulent social media sites.

“We have advised people who have contacted us directly to report the matter to the police.

“We always advise customers to book through trusted channels.” for example through the official Haven website, ABTA agent or affiliated third party.

The spokesman explained: “At our sites, and many other caravan parks, people own their own caravans and can do what they like. Many choose to allow us to handle bookings if they wish to rent out their caravans but others will advertise on social media or through people like Lisa Mcguire.

“That can work out well but when it does not, like in this case, then everyone loses out.”.”