A 20MPH speed limit is to be introduced in towns across East Lothian as the council introduces new measures to support social distancing.

East Lothian Council received £1.4million funding from the Scottish Government's Spaces For People programme to help introduce changes in towns to help people get around in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

And they revealed a string of changes which will take place in towns across the county with the biggest a reduction in speed for all six towns.

The date for the introduction of the new 20mph speed limit has not been revealed however a council spokesperson said: "We are currently procuring the necessary signs to be erected over the next 2 -3 weeks".

The council said measures being introduced were focused on "protecting public health, supporting social distancing and preventing a second wave of the outbreak".

Councillor Norman Hampshire, environment spokesperson and deputy council leader, said: "Spaces for People funding has been made available to local authorities to deal with the outcome of the covid-19 pandemic and specifically to assist people as restrictions of movement are gradually eased.

"These temporary measures are designed to assist the public in maintaining physical distancing, enhance safer movement and access and to promote areas for safe exercise.”

The council held a public consultation over ways to improve the road network and travel in East Lothian which sawy 3,000 contributions.

Councillor Hampshire said it was clear from the response that many people wanted cycling catered for more on the roads.

He said: "Given the requirements to take exercise close to home there has been a huge increase in cycling locally.

"Many comments received sought opportunities to continue cycling and some changes being made to roads will see the creation of circular cycle routes of 3-5km in each town which can be used by novice cyclists building up confidence to cycle in traffic.”

“Each of the county’s six main towns will see measures introduced but it’s important to emphasise that these are temporary and will remain under review."

The details of the temporary measures include:


· Investigate with ScottishPower, owners of the electric bridge, to open the bridge for non-motorised vehicles.

· Widen the cycle lane on Edinburgh road to 1.8m

· Re-time pedestrian crossing signals on High Street

· Dedicate one carriageway of the Loan, Wallyford to shared use walking and cycling to Wallyford Primary School


· Temporarily close Winton Place to vehicle traffic in favour of pedestrians and cyclists

· Consider additional space for distanced queuing at bus stops


· Temporary closure of Tynebank Road to through traffic

· Replace parking on Hospital Road from West Road to hospital entrance with cycle lane

· Market Street and High Street increase pavement space to accommodate queuing and social distancing

· Hardgate (between Victoria Terrace & Church Street) make one-way to provide more pedestrian space


· Creation of a ‘pop up’ cycle lane between Levenhall and Prestonpans

· Temporary creation of an on-road cycle lane on B1361 from west of train station


· Temporary reduction of Back Road to single carriageway with priority to traffic coming up the hill.

· Temporary closure of road from Eweford to Belhaven Hospital

· Westgate and Victoria Street have narrow footways so removal of parking to create temporary segregated space for pedestrians and cyclists

North Berwick

· Temporary closure of East High Street to through traffic

· Provide wider pedestrian access on Central and West High Street

In rural locations additional cycle racks will be installed at countryside sites including coastal car parks.