Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for museums, galleries and heritage attractions

Good practice guidelines for museums, galleries and heritage attractions

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for museums, galleries and heritage attractions
Training and compliance

Training and compliance

As a minimum we expect:

  • training around processes and working environment expectations to be provided for all members of the workforce before restarting work

Workforce training

Every site should look and feel substantially different for both members of the workforce and the public. Physical distancing and enhanced hygiene will change how sites operate. Training for the workforce will therefore be essential to build a common understanding of requirements within the new working norm, instilling confidence that changes put in place contribute to a safe site.  

Training methods should ensure effective delivery of relevant overarching and organisation-specific measures and expectations of the workforce while on site, in a way which maintains physical distancing. Organisations should consider, as part of their risk-based planning, how training can be safely delivered, especially if elements are normally outsourced to third parties. Visual aids may be required as part of the training and for ongoing guidance and communications An effective induction process for members of the workforce returning to work, can help demonstrate organisations are taking the COVID-19 risks seriously, building confidence amongst the workforce that they are returning to a safe workplace while also reinforcing the importance of the responsibility of individual members of the workforce. 


Organisations should also put in place, with trade union or workforce representatives, robust arrangements to monitor compliance with new operational arrangements, considering both workforce and the public. Remedial actions should flow from that monitoring, and be augmented by advice, guidance and support from external enforcement authorities.

It is vital during restart for members of the workforce and the public to have confidence in the steps being taken by organisations. Organisation should look to establish processes to allow feedback from members of the workforce and the public on social distancing and safety protocols, enabling the workforce and the public to input on areas of concern and for organisations to act upon these concerns.

A single point of contact has also been established for trade union or the workforce to help the Scottish Government understand how all COVID-19 workplace guidance is being implemented, and to help shape and refine that guidance based on the real experience of workers in the workplace. The mailbox can be contacted by email:

This contact is not intended to be a reporting mechanism for potential breaches of legislation.

Under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 (HSWA), your local authority Environmental Health Service will usually be the relevant enforcing authority for how you control the risk of coronavirus in museums, galleries and heritage attractions.  In some cases, it may be HSE but, in any case, enforcing authorities will apply the same requirements. HSE can be contacted by phone on 0300 003 1647 or online at HSE contact form

Local authorities also have enforcement powers under public health legislation, which may be relevant.

HSE and local authority Environmental Health Services have agreed to maintain the way they allocate different businesses for enforcement according to existing health and safety law for the purposes of workers’ health and safety.

Where the enforcing authority identifies employers who are not taking action to comply with public health guidance to control COVID-19 health risks to workers, they will consider a range of actions to improve control of workplace risks including the provision of specific advice to employers through to issuing enforcement notices or even prosecution.

First published: 6 Jul 2020 Last updated: 19 Jul 2021 -