Last Monday (26 April), Scotland moved to Level 3 of the Strategic Framework, including the islands. It is expected that from Monday 17 May, we will move to Level 2, followed by Level 1 in early June and Level 0 in late June. In addition to the movement in Levels, there has been ongoing work to specifically look at guidance in relation to events.

The Scottish Government recently published guidance (26 April) relating to the calculation of physical distancing capacity in public settings which includes events. The guidance is based on standards which have been in place since summer 2020 and is intended to provide a framework for public settings as part of their consideration into how many people can safely physically distance in any given space.

Both the Event Industry Advisory Group (EIAG) and the wider sector continue to underline the immense challenge in assessing capacities for events under the currently published guidance and have recently called for a further relaxation of physical distancing to ensure viability and consistency in line with other sectors including tourism and hospitality.

The Scottish Government is actively considering the requirements around physical distancing and continues to monitor the outcomes of the Events Research Programme in England which is currently exploring how a combination of testing and mitigations can inform decisions on safely lifting restrictions across a number of settings.

In addition to the published guidance on physical distancing, the approval process for medium and large events is currently continuing to be developed following valuable stakeholder engagement directly with local authority contacts, members of the Event Industry Advisory Group, and others with an interest in events. The purpose of this is to allow event planners and venue operators to seek approval for events over and above the number capacity limits detailed in the Protection Levels. The Scottish Government will provide an update on this process as swiftly as possible, and in advance of 17 May.