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Travel Scotland

Boddam Castle

Boddam Castle, Aberdeenshire

The Boddam Castle lies c 3 km South of Peterhead on a level promontory between two deep vertical sided sea inlets.

A late sixteenth/early seventeenth century courtyard castle, built by the Keith family.

The Keith’s support for the Jacobite cause saw them ruined financially and the castle was allowed to fall into decay.

The remains of the 16-17th century Boddam Castle consist of the entrance archway, surmounted by a low gable, and one or two smaller arches as well as the complete foundation.

Boddam Castle
Picture by Kenny Bruce

What may have been the hinges of a drawbridge were found when a trench was cut in front of the entrance in 1868.

Boddam Castle comprises the remains of a curtain wall, c.33.0 m square, with the entrance in the West consisting of the West gable of a building with a round arched doorway and square window above.

Three gun-loops are visible. The footings of a range of buildings remain within the enclosure against the North and South walls.

Boddam Castle
The engraving was done in 1784 by an unknown artist.

travel restrictions update

Travel restrictions update

Travel restrictions update between Scotland and three local authority areas in England

Moray will be the only local authority area to change protection level as it moves to Level 2 at 00.00 tonight, 21 May 2021, following improvement in coronavirus (COVID-19) prevalence.

Data available this morning showed that in the last week case rates in Moray have fallen sharply, from 98 per 100,000 to 37 per 100,000, and cases of the April-02 variant – the so-called Indian variant – are lower there than in other parts of the country.

Travel restrictions update between Scotland and three local authority areas in England will be restricted from 00:01 on Monday 24 May 2021 due to sustained high prevalence of the virus in Bedford, Bolton and Blackburn with Darwen.

This will be reviewed in a week along with the other measures announced today.

Travel restrictions update – People can travel freely throughout most of Scotland and between most of Scotland and the rest of the UK, other than to, or from, Glasgow. Because Glasgow remains in Level 3.

Nicola Sturgeon said:

“The situation in Moray has improved very significantly – cases and test positivity have fallen markedly and the April-02 variant does not seem to be as commonly present as in Glasgow and some other parts of the country. I can therefore confirm that Moray will now move down to Level 2, taking effect from midnight tonight. This has been made possible by the efforts of local public health teams, their partners, and of course the public – and I am grateful to all of them.

Travel restrictions update
Travel restrictions update

“Extensive public health measures have been deployed in Glasgow city, including enhanced testing and vaccination in the areas with the highest rates of COVID – especially the G41 and G42 postcodes – and enhanced contact tracing has been put in place. Despite all of the efforts that have been made in the last 10 days, however, cases in Glasgow are still rising and we are fairly certain the increase is being driven by the April-02 variant. We are confident that the major public health efforts which are underway will be effective – and that they will bring levels of the virus back under control – but they need a bit longer to do that.

“We also need a bit more time to be more confident that vaccination will stop rising case numbers today becoming sharply rising hospital and severe illness numbers a couple of weeks from now.

“I know how unwelcome Glasgow remaining in Level 3 is for individuals and businesses, but I genuinely hope it will not be for too much longer, and all of us who do live in Glasgow can play our part in getting this under control as soon as possible.

“While the case rates per 100,000 in Glasgow and East Renfrewshire look similar, the total number of cases in East Renfrewshire – because it’s a smaller area – is significantly smaller than in Glasgow. More importantly, many more of the cases that have been reported in the last week in East Renfrewshire can be traced to specific household clusters than is the case in Glasgow, where transmission appears to be much more widespread. That means we think strong and targeted public health measures have more of a chance of stemming the rise, without the need to use wider restrictions.

“We know there are particularly serious outbreaks of the April-02 variant in three specific English local authority areas – Bedford, Bolton, and Blackburn with Darwen. For that reason, from Monday onwards, we are imposing hopefully temporary Travel restrictions update between Scotland and those three local authority areas in England. If you are planning to visit friends or relatives, or to stay in those areas, you must delay your visit. We hope that these rules and guidelines will not be in place for very long, but at the moment they are a further way of reducing the risk that people will bring the April-02 variant into Scotland from those locations.”

travel restrictions update
Travel restrictions update

Level 2 restrictions will apply across all of mainland Scotland from midnight tonight 21 May 2021, with the exception of Glasgow City local authority area. Travel to, and from, Glasgow continues to be prohibited other than for permitted reasons.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) protection levels: what you can do – gov.scot

International travel

International travel and managed isolation.

International travel and managed isolation process for people entering Scotland.

From Monday 17 May, Scotland will move to a traffic light system for overseas travel.

You should not International travel to countries on the red or amber lists unless it is for an essential purpose.

International travel – Red, Amber and Green list countries: changes from 17 May

What you do when you arrive in Scotland from abroad depends on:

  • where you’ve been in the 10 days before arriving in Scotland
  • whether the country or area you’ve travelled from is on the red, amber or green list

This page:

  • lists countries and areas that will be red, amber or green from the 17 May
  • outlines what you must do after arriving in Scotland

International travel, Red list countries and areas

If you have been in a country or area on the red list at any point in the 10 days before arriving in Scotland, you will only be allowed to enter the UK if either:

You should not International travel to red list countries or areas on holiday, or for any leisure purposes.

Before travelling to Scotland from a red list country, you’ll need to:

On arrival in Scotland, you must quarantine in the hotel you’ve booked for 10 days.

out of lockdown
International Travel

Red list countries and areas from 17 May

  • Angola
  • Argentina
  • Bangladesh
  • Bolivia
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Burundi
  • Cape Verde
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Congo (Democratic Republic)
  • Ecuador
  • Eswatini
  • Ethiopia
  • French Guiana
  • Guyana
  • India
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Maldives
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Nepal
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Qatar
  • Rwanda
  • Seychelles
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • Suriname
  • Tanzania
  • Turkey
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • Uruguay
  • Venezuela
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Amber list countries and areas from 17 May

You should not International travel to a country or area on the amber list for holidays or for any other leisure purpose.

  • Afghanistan
  • Akrotiri and Dhekelia
  • Albania
  • Algeria
  • Andorra
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Armenia
  • Aruba
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan
  • The Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Barbados
  • Belarus
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • Benin
  • Bermuda
  • Bhutan
  • Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • British Antarctic Territory
  • British Indian Ocean Territory
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Bulgaria
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • China
  • Comoros
  • Congo
  • Cook Islands
  • Costa Rica
  • Côte d’Ivoire
  • Croatia
  • Cuba
  • Curaçao
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic (Czechia)
  • Denmark
  • Djibouti
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Eritrea
  • Estonia
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • French Polynesia
  • Gabon
  • The Gambia
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Greece (including islands)
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guatemala
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kiribati
  • Kosovo
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Laos
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Liberia
  • Libya
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macao
  • Madagascar
  • Malaysia
  • Mali
  • Malta
  • Marshall Islands
  • Martinique
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Mexico
  • Micronesia
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Myanmar (Burma)
  • Nauru
  • Netherlands
  • New Caledonia
  • Nicaragua
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • North Korea
  • North Macedonia
  • Norway
  • The Occupied Palestinian Territories
  • Palau
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie and Oeno Islands
  • Poland
  • Réunion
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Samoa
  • San Marino
  • Sao Tome and Principe
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Serbia
  • Sierra Leone
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • South Korea
  • South Sudan
  • Spain (including the Balearics and Canary Islands)
  • Sri Lanka
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Martin and St Barthélemy
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Sudan
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Syria
  • Taiwan
  • Tajikistan
  • Thailand
  • Timor-Leste
  • Togo
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tunisia
  • Turkmenistan
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Tuvalu
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • United States (USA)
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vanuatu
  • Vietnam
  • Wallis and Futuna
  • Western Sahara
  • Yemen

Green list countries and areas from 17 May

This section tells you what you will need to do if you travel to Scotland from a country or area on the green list from 17 May.

If you’ve been in a country or area on the red or amber list in the 10 days before arriving in Scotland, you’ll need to follow the rules for red or amber list countries.

Before travelling to Scotland from a green list country or area, you must:

You will not need to isolate unless:

  • the result of the COVID-19 test you’ve taken on day 2 after arriving back in Scotland is positive
  • NHS Test and Protect contact you to let you know that you need to isolate as you’ve travelled with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19

Green list countries and areas from 17 May

  • Australia
  • Brunei
  • Falkland Islands
  • Faroe Islands
  • Gibraltar
  • Iceland
  • Israel and Jerusalem
  • New Zealand
  • Portugal (including the Azores and Madeira)
  • Singapore
  • South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands
  • St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha

Travel advice

Before planning International travel, or getting ready to International travel, you should check the latest updates on the country or area you’re travelling to.

Many other countries have rules in place about who can enter and what you can do when you are there. These rules are not related to whether a country is on a red, amber or green list. Before you International travel, you should read the FCDO travel advice for the countries you will visit.

ALSO CHECK ALL UPDATE

Scotland

Scotland move to level 3

Scotland move to level 3 – significant easing of restrictions across retail, hospitality and travel.

Nicola Sturgeon has announced details of the further relaxation of restrictions across Scotland.

From Monday 26 April, hospitality venues such as cafes, pubs and restaurants can reopen, along with tourist accommodation.

Non-essential retail outlets and close contact services such as beauty salons can also reopen, in addition to indoor attractions and public buildings such as galleries, museums and libraries.

The First Minister confirmed that all parts of the country will move to Level 3 from Monday 26 April. The remaining travel restrictions within Scotland will be lifted and travel within the UK will be permitted for any purpose.

If everyone continues to follow the rules, the First Minister said it is expected that all of Scotland will move to Level 2 on Monday 17 May.

Further changes from 26 April include:

  • Adults on the shielding list can return to the workplace, if they cannot work from home, while children who have been shielding can return to school
  • Non-essential work inside people’s homes – such as painting, decorating or repairing – will be permitted, subject to mitigations
  • Non-essential informal childcare will resume
  • Driving lessons and tests can take place, while gyms and swimming pools can reopen for individual exercise
  • The attendance limit for funerals and weddings – and related events such as receptions – will increase to 50
  • Cafes, pubs and restaurants can resume full outdoor service, subject to local licensing, and serve food indoors without alcohol until 8pm
  • Takeaways to resume normal service, with physical distancing and face masks in premises
Scotland, Peterhead

The First Minister also announced that rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) tests will be made available to anyone in Scotland and to those planning travel to the islands.

From today, anyone planning travel to the islands next week can order a free home test kit online. The first test should be taken three days before travel and the second on the day of departure.

From Monday, lateral flow home test kits will be available to anyone in the wider population who does not have COVID-19 symptoms. They can be picked up from local walk/drive-through test sites for people to test themselves twice-weekly. Anyone in Scotland who develops COVID-19 symptoms should self-isolate and book a PCR test.

The expansion is aimed at finding cases that would otherwise go undetected, so those people can self-isolate and avoid transmitting the virus to those around them.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: 

“The changes that come into force next week have been hard earned by all of us. I know that many will be looking forward – quite rightly – to their first drink in a beer garden, to catching up with a friend in a café, or to going on holiday somewhere in Scotland.

“But even as we enjoy those moments, we still need to be careful. We must remember the virus is more infectious now than it was when bars and cafés were last open, so we must still stick to the rules. However, we are hopeful of seeing sustained progress in the weeks and months ahead.

“We are keeping island communities in Level 3 at the moment, so that we can allow travel between those communities and the rest of Scotland. If you are planning to travel to an island and do not have COVID-19 symptoms, we will encourage you to take two lateral flow tests for COVID-19 before you depart. This is an important way to reduce the risk of bringing COVID-19 into island communities. If you are travelling to an island next week, it is possible to get tests from today, and I would encourage you to do that.”

Arctic explorer

Arctic explorer Benjamin Leigh had new ship Eira built at the Peterhead yard.

Arctic explorer Leigh Smith Expeditions on board the Eira 1880, 1881-82

This gravestone in one of Peterhead local cemeteries hides a tale of Arctic exploration and adventure. The stone commemorates Alexander Robertson, formerly a crewman on the steamship Eira, which was built by the Arctic explorer Benjamin Leigh Smith in Peterhead.

Benjamin Leigh Smith paid for Alexander’s headstone.

Leigh Smith was a wealthy man and travelled extensively to the Svalbard and Spitsbergen regions between 1871 and 1882. In 1880 he had the ship Eira (a screw barquentine) built at the Peterhead yard of Messrs Stephen and Forbes. The whaling family, the Grays, helped with the building, with David Gray assisting in the drawing up of specifications. Leigh Smith made his next voyage to the Arctic in 1880, departing Peterhead on board Eira on 22 May.

On this expedition he took William John Alexander (Johnny) Grant as the official photographer. Grant had established a reputation as a polar photographer, having been on many polar expeditions and exhibited his photographs at the Royal Photographic Society, as well as being a Fellow of the Society and of the Royal Geographic Society.

Leigh Smith and his crew of 24 (mainly Scots and Shetlanders as was common for Artic exploration at the time) aimed to explore Jan Mayen but this was covered in mist. On 11 July, Eira met up with the Peterhead whalers Hope and Eclipse led by John and David Gray.

The crew of the sailing ship ‘Eira’ dismember a polar bear on the ice at the bows of the ‘Eira’ which is moored to the ice. A crew member stands on deck watching.

Arctic explorers
From left to right are: David Gray at the helm (Capt. Eclipse), Benjamin Leigh-Smith (Capt./owner Eira),  Arthur Conan Doyle (Surgeon Hope), John Gray (Capt. Hope), Dr.Walker and Dr.Neale, and William Lofley (ice master Eira) right at the stern. Pictures: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

They were finally rescued by the Dutch ship Willem Barentzs and transferred to the Peterhead whaler Hope for the journey home. It’s thought Alexander Robertson died of the privations his body had suffered on the ice.

Part of information credit by Kenny Bruce

Business start re-open

Business start reopening after lockdown in Scotland from Monday 5 April

Business start reopening, cautious easing of lockdown

Hairdressers, garden centres, car showrooms and forecourts, homeware stores and non-essential click and collect services will be able to open from Monday 5 April Business start reopening after lockdown, subject to enhanced safety measures including physical distancing, face coverings and pre-booking where appropriate.

More college students will be able to return to on-campus learning and 12-17 year-olds will be able to resume outdoor contact sports from this date.

Restrictions on non-essential travel across local authority boundaries will remain in place.

People must stay within their council area for non-essential shopping and should only travel to another area for essential shopping if there are no practical alternatives.

People should also continue to work from home where they can to prevent unnecessary contact that could risk transmission of the virus.

Business start re-open
Business start reopening after lockdown

The latest easing of restrictions comes as data shows continued suppression of Coronavirus (COVID-19), and progress on vaccination. Virtually all over 65 year olds have now received a first dose of the vaccine, and the average daily case rate is now 539 new cases per day, a decline of more than 75% since early January.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

“We have made progress both in suppressing the virus and in vaccination, and therefore the changes I previously indicated will go ahead on 5 April.

“The stay at home rule is being replaced by a requirement to stay local – while Covid levels remain high in some areas, and while a lot of people remain unvaccinated, we do not want the virus to spread from areas with relatively high prevalence to areas with low rates of infection. That’s why the current travel restrictions, which prevent non-essential travel outside your local authority area, are really important.

Lockdown Timetable
Business start reopening

“It will be easier to relax more restrictions in the future if case numbers remain under control, so when things open up slightly this weekend please continue to stick to the rules, and follow the advice and the instructions given by store staff to keep you and the other customers safe.

“Stay at home – for now – protect the NHS, and follow the FACTS advice when you are out and about to help save lives.”

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: First Minister’s statement – 30 March 2021 – gov.scot

Guidance will be updated on Friday and Monday to take account of the changes confirmed today.

During the pre-election period the usual parliamentary protocol applies and draft regulations will be shared with the COVID-19 Committee.

Consultation with sectors still to reopen is ongoing, towards further decisions on easing to be taken ahead of the next review point on 26 April.