Scottish beer gardens to reopen on 6 July

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Government guidance: outside areas in Scottish hospitality venues could reopen on 6 July
Government guidance: outside areas in Scottish hospitality venues could reopen on 6 July

Related tags: Coronavirus

Scotland’s outdoor hospitality areas such as beer gardens are poised to reopen on 6 July – nine days before inside use is to be permitted.

While businesses may be able to reopen indoors on 15 July, Tourism Secretary Fergus Ewing told the Scottish Parliament that this was dependant on whether the country was able to move to the next phase of easing lockdown restrictions at that point.

Addressing Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) during First Minister’s Questions, Nicola Sturgeon said these were “indicative dates” depending on a “continued suppression of the virus”.

“This greater clarity is possible because of the progress we have made against the virus but delivering on the milestones depends on that progress continuing," Scotland's First Minister added.

“We must keep working to drive it down further, towards the point of elimination because that then gives us the best chance of keeping it under control through testing, surveillance, contact tracing and the application of targeted suppression measures when necessary."

Distancing measures

Sturgeon said: “The prize if we succeed is getting greater normality back in our lives, maybe more quickly than we would have envisaged a few weeks ago and without reversals back into blanket lockdown.”

Pubs and restaurants will be able to open inside on 15 July but subject to distancing measures alongside other “conditions”.

The Scottish Government published guidance for tourism and hospitality businesses​ earlier this month (Friday 19 June).

Sturgeon also confirmed social distancing measures will be subject to rigorous research.

The guidance for Scotland’s hospitality sector currently includes 2m distancing, which needs to be marked with tape or paint on floors.

Safety measures

Scottish Government guidance also includes signage being used to communicate key health and safety points, limiting the number of customers to maintain distancing, one-way systems and staggering arrival and departure times of staff to help reduce crowding.

Customers should be encouraged to use contactless or cashless payments where possible and to observe high standards of hand hygiene by providing hand sanitiser at entry and exit point and in any common areas. Cleaning schedules should be implemented and frequent touch points disinfected regularly.

When it comes the toilets, the guidance stated operators should give careful consideration to how these can be used safely and to check the guidance provided on this area when it is made available.

These moves depend on safety measures being put in place and pubs will have to keep customer contact details for four weeks.

As in England, live entertainment venues such as nightclubs and theatres won’t reopen until a later date.

Related topics: Legislation

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