Visitors to East Lothian this weekend are being urged to act responsibly as concerns, magnified by the localised lockdown in Aberdeen, are raised regarding the county's coronavirus ‘fragility”.

Councillor Norman Hampshire, depute East Lothian Council leader, has appealed to visitors and residents to follow the rules to avoid a Covid-19 outbreak in the county.

He said while locals had been playing their part in helping curb the spread of the virus,  the situation in Aberdeen, where an outbreak has seen a localised lockdown with pubs and restaurants ordered to close, should serve as a warning to all.

Mr Hampshire said: “We’re very grateful to everyone for their support as well as to the many hard-working volunteers who have been helping others in their community.

“While progress has been made and aspects of lockdown have been eased, the recent announcement of particular restrictions returning to the city of Aberdeen highlights the real fragility and risk which Covid-19 continues to pose.

“For that reason there can be room for complacency. It’s absolutely essential that, before leaving home, we all plan how we will keep safe and minimise risk to ourselves, our loved ones and others.”

The depute council leader also issued a plea to visitors to the county, ahead of what is expected to be another busy weekend, to respect the rules after reports of large numbers of campers at beauty spots, litter, bonfires and illegal parking.

Countryside Rangers reported at one point finding 90 tents full of people camping out at one beauty spot where there were no toilet facilities.

And there have been reports of council workers being abused and refused access to public toilets when they arrived to clean them or replenish stock by irate members of the public queuing to use them.

He said: “In recent weeks, it has been pleasing that we have been able to get out and more – see friends and family, visit some of our favourite places and support local businesses.

“We want everyone to be able to continue doing so – safely and responsibly.

“That’s why, if you are visiting somewhere in East Lothian such as a beauty spot or one of our town centres, we ask that you park in a designated parking space and with consideration for others, including fellow motorists, pedestrians and cyclists.

“It is not acceptable for vehicles to be block the movements of others – it can be dangerous and prevent physical distancing. Please park in safe places, avoid parking on narrow country roads particularly where sight lines are limited.  Inappropriate parking will face enforcement action – penalty charge notices have been issued – last weekend 123 were issued.

“Many of our coastal and countryside areas have been extremely busy in recent weeks. With physical distancing being so important, it’s really crucial that we avoid crowds and make sure we give ourselves plenty of space – for our own benefit as well as that of others.

“We would also ask that people visiting our open spaces please bin or take rubbish away with them. This helps others enjoy our wonderful natural environment and supports our staff who can focus on other work at a time when are fully-focused on the continued response to the pandemic.

“We are a long way from being out of the woods.”