Joint message from Mel Young, sportscotland Chair and Joe FitzPatrick MSP

5 June 2020

COVID-19 travel restrictions

Last week we entered Phase 1 of the Scottish Government Route Map for moving out of lockdown, which allowed some flexibility to the existing restrictions. As part of Phase 1, we were pleased that a number of outdoor activities and sport could return. We were grateful for the work you did to support that and provide clear guidance to your clubs and members.

As part of that guidance we recommended that people do not travel more than 5 miles for recreation, but we left room for some discretion so that people could go further to visit family.

While the majority adhered to this guidance, there was some evidence of a minority not abiding by those guidelines and travelling significant distances unnecessarily. If people continue to make journeys which risk spreading the virus - we may have to put the restrictions on travel distance into law. This is something we do not want to do, but may have to if we think it is necessary for the collective safety and wellbeing of everyone.

We have made significant progress in tackling Covid-19 but this is not irreversible. It requires us all to be responsible and adhere to the rules that are in place.

If we all stick to these rules we are helping to suppress this virus. However, by travelling greater distances to undertake activities unnecessarily, we are providing a chance for the virus to spread more quickly, and to spread to different parts of the country.

We welcome your support on this issue and ask that you reinforce this with your clubs and members as a matter of urgency.


Yours sincerely,


Joe FitzPatrick, Minister for Public Health, Sport and Wellbeing

Mel Young, Chair of sportscotland                                        

Date published: 08 June 2020
Date updated: 01 September 2021


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