Blackness Castle welcomes public once again

After months of being closed, Blackness Castle opened its doors to visitors again on Monday.

Monday, 17th August 2020, 3:19 pm
Blackness Castle has reopened to the public, but visitors must book in advance.
Blackness Castle has reopened to the public, but visitors must book in advance.

The Covid-19 pandemic forced Historic Environment Scotland (HES) to close its visitor attractions throughout Scotland in March.

However following the successful reopening of its three main sites – Edinburgh, Stirling and Urquhart Castles at the start of the month, it is now rolling out the reopening of a further 12 of its ticketed sites across the country.

Blackness Castle, which attracts many visitors for its connections with the television series Outlander, is the fourth HES site to reopen.

And it will be followed by Inchcolm Abbey, Huntly Castle and Melrose Abbey on Wednesday, August 19 and Elgin Cathedral and Caerlaverock Castle on Friday, August 21.

Nearby Linlithgow Palace, Doune Castle and Dunstaffnage Castle will reopen the following week on Wednesday, August 26, before Skara Brae, Tantallon Castle and Glasgow Cathedral open again on Friday, August 28.

Although the site is welcoming visitors back, safety measures have been put in place to help keep staff and members of the public safe.

Among the measures, cash payments are no longer being accepted and visitors are asked to use contactless payment where possible.

One way systems are in place in some locations and some indoor areas may be closed, such as small enclosed spaces where physical distancing is not possible.

At Blackness, the Mid Tower has had its capacity limited to allow physical distancing.

All visitors must book tickets online in advance before visiting the sites, and people are asked to wear face coverings when entering shops, cafes and internal enclosed spaces in line with Scottish Government guidance.

Alex Paterson, chief executive of HES, said: “I am very pleased that we are on track to open 23 ticketed sites by mid-September, and this is all down to the efforts of all of our staff to ensure these historic sites are ready to safely welcome visitors once again.

“We hope the reopening of these iconic sites will help to further demonstrate that Scotland’s tourism industry is open for business, and we thank everyone who has already helped kick start the tourism industry by visiting Edinburgh, Stirling and Urquhart castles since they reopened at the beginning of this month.”

To find out more about visiting HES sites or to book your tickets visit www.historicreopening.scot

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