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Physical distancing guidelines for business


If you’re an essential business, and still open, please follow physical distancing requirements as far as possible.

Retail and public premises that remain open must:

  • Control entry of people into the shop, to ensure that the 2m minimum rule can be observed for both customers and employees.
  • Maintain queue control outside of shops and other essential premises so that the 2m minimum rule is observed by those waiting in the queue – customers must not be allowed to congregate or loiter.
  • Within the shop, there must be a minimum 2m clearance between customers and employees.

Food businesses may offer a takeaway service. To do this, the following measures should be taken:

  • Payment by direct electronic transfer or tap – no cash where possible.
  • Pre-order over the phone and pick up at a specified time and location.
  • Customer waiting areas to be controlled, for example by the demarcation of 2m square boxes.
  • Customers must not be allowed to congregate.
  • Frequent thorough cleaning and disinfection of all hand contact points in the waiting area.

Our Environmental Health and Trading Standards Officers, working in partnership with Police Scotland, are authorised to serve prohibition notices on businesses that fail to comply with the requirements of the regulations. Businesses that don't follow guidance will initially receive a warning and advice.  Following this, any business that still fails to comply could ultimately see enforcement action taken against them.

If you are business and would like advice on social /physical distancing measures, please email:

If you already have plans, or measures, in place for social / physical distancing within your workplace, but would like check if you have done all you need to, or you need advice on what you need to consider, please email:

If you are concerned about any of the following:

  • If a business should be trading
  • Pavement marking for social distancing outside businesses
  • Social distancing in open businesses
  • Profiteering.

Please e-mail:

If you have any concerns about people gathering in public please contact Police Scotland on 101.