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No date set for reopening of outdoor hospitality in Scotland

18 June 2020 by
No date set for reopening of outdoor hospitality in Scotland

Scotland's first minister Nicola Sturgeon has declined to give a date for the reopening of any hospitality venues as she announced the relaxing of lockdown measures.

Sturgeon said that the country was moving into phase 2, with shops able to open from 29 June as long as they have an outdoor entrance, and up to three families able to meet. However, she added that it was not yet possible to put a date on the opening of pubs and restaurants, with or without outside space.

She said: "One other change that was envisaged in the routemap for phase two was the reopening of outdoor hospitality such as beer gardens. Unfortunately I am not able to give a date for that just yet. we may be able to set a date later that is within phase 2 but I have commissioned further advice from our scientific advisory group to inform this decision."

She added that there was emerging evidence that pubs and restaurants "can be hotspots for transmission", so the government would take time to "understand this evidence and what further mitigation might be necessary to protect people in such spaces before we permit them to reopen".

Sturgeon said: "I appreciate this will be hard for the hospitality industry and I want to give an assurance to businesses in that sector that we will continue to support preparations for reopening – for example, by encouraging local authorities to facilitate the use of open outdoor spaces that pubs and restaurants can use for additional space."

The first minister said that further advice was expected in two weeks and that she would set out when hospitality can open "on or around" 2 July.

Photo: Shutterstock

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