Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Coronavirus: Police alerted to people at beach during lockdown

Crowds walking near Portobello beach, Edinburgh Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Hundreds of people flocked to the beach in Edinburgh on what was the hottest day of the year in Scotland so far

Police spoke to people on Portobello beach in Edinburgh after they were alerted to large numbers of people in the area.

Families and groups of sunbathers were seen enjoying the sunshine and mainly observing the two-metre distancing guidelines.

But the move breaches restrictions on leaving home during the lockdown.

Police Scotland said officers did not issue any fines but it urged people to obey lockdown rules to stay at home.

'Can't stay two metres away? Get yourself out'

The scenes - including images of the busy promenade - were a matter of concern for local politicians including Edinburgh MSP Ruth Davidson.

She said: "We've had weeks of this now where people have obeyed the rules, they've done the right thing, they've looked out for themselves, they've looked out for each other, they've looked out for the NHS.

"Just because it's a sunny day, don't throw that away... don't break the rules.

"If you can't stay two metres away like at Portabello today, get yourself out of that place."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Police Scotland said officers did not issue any fines

The current Scottish government lockdown measures say people should go out as little as possible in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

They should only leave home if they have a reasonable excuse. This includes:

  • Exercise - alone or with members of your household
  • Shopping for basic necessities
  • Any medical need, or providing care for a vulnerable person
  • Travel to or from work if you cannot work from home

'Encourage compliance'

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said the situation was first reported to them about 14:15.

She added: "Our officers will continue to engage with the public, explain the legislation, encourage compliance and will use enforcement only when necessary."