National park’s plea for Scots to stay away ‘a bit longer’

People have been asked to respect Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, which will 'reopen in time'.

The chief executive of a national park has urged people not to travel to visit the beauty spot because “the time just isn’t right”.

Police have already warned Scots over the last week not to flock to “normally busy areas”, while Scottish Government guidance advises staying within five miles of your local community.

And Gordon Watson, of Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, has issued a plea for people to keep this advice in mind as Scotland enters its second weekend of the first phase of easing lockdown restrictions.

He said: “Everyone has been in lockdown for a long time and it’s been frustrating not getting out to our favourite places, so this is a tricky time because we have a little bit more freedom but things are still far from normal.

“I know people have really missed the national park and are desperate to come back for a visit. I don’t blame you it’s a wonderful place.

“But for now the time just isn’t right. All visitor facilities, including car parks, around the national park are staying closed this weekend and here’s why.

“The national guidance is clear that people should be staying home as much as possible and not travelling more than five miles for outdoor activities.

“People should also specifically not be going to crowded places and beauty spots like we have here in the national park.

“Doing this creates the risk of spreading the infection to small rural communities, like we have living here, as well as putting unnecessary pressure on local services, which are also not yet running as normal.

“The national park is simply not ready for large numbers of visitors yet.

“Everything will reopen in time but only in line with the national guidelines and when we have the measures in place to run these facilities in a way that is safe for people using them, working at the and living near them.”

Mr Watson added “if you love the national park please respect it and for now that may mean staying away a bit longer”.

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