Actions we have taken and our responsibilities
Both ourselves and our cleaners have completed the Covid 19 - Holiday Let Clean Course, Taught by Landlords Little Helper and recommended by the Scottish Association of Self Caterers (ASSC).
We have studied the ASSCs Cleaning protocols which have been approved by the Scottish Government and we have joined Sawday’s Clean and Safe Charter.
We have completed risk assessments of each cottage. During this process we identify risks and try to mitigate them. If we think that the risk cannot be mitigated we may have had to remove the risk in question for now.
Items that we have removed include, books, toys, games, dvds, leaflets & most of the guidebooks. We have identified that we cannot disinfect these to the standard that we would like so have removed these temporarily.
We have replaced the guide books with online information on our website, what’s on, local eateries doing takeaways, good hill-walks etc that you can access on your own devices.
All crockery, cutlery, glassware and kitchenware must be put through the dishwasher or hand washed in hot soapy water on every change over (regardless of whether it has been left clean by previous guests or not). In order to make this feasible, we have had to reduce kitchen equipment available to guests for now.
Herbs and spices, salt, pepper, and canned items will be left in the cupboards but all other foodstuffs we usually leave (pasta, flours, rice etc.) will be removed.
We are changing all bedding at every changeover to allow for sufficient cleaning of pillows, duvets and mattress protectors between guests.
We are steam cleaning all of the soft furnishings between guests.
We are disinfecting with a virucidal spray before and after a deep-clean on all high touch points and surfaces. We are using Envirosafe SF (food safe) EN14476 for kitchens and Envirosafe Multi Surface EN14476 for the rest of the cottage.
Exterior BBQs, seating, and gate latches will be disinfected.
The Woodshed hot tub will be cleaned and disinfected including all high touch points.
For now we will no longer be offering home-made scones, jam, butter & milk. We will however provide tea, milk, and biscuits in sealed packets.
We will operate a self check-in with phone numbers for any problems you may encounter during your stay.
We will need to store your information, name, address and telephone number in a secure and GDPR compliant database for the foreseeable future to help with Scottish government track and trace investigations in case of isolated outbreaks.
If any of our staff are feeling at all unwell they will self isolate immediately.
We are very aware of the huge upsurge in the use of single use plastics. Rest assured that, where possible, we are using masks and aprons that can be laundered and reuseable gloves that can go through a dishwasher cycle for disinfection.
We ask guests to please inform us if you feel at all unwell in the run up to your stay. We are offering postponements or gift vouchers for those cancelling at the last minute due to Covid-19 symptoms.
We are asking guests to self check-in. The keys will be left in key safes outside the cottage doors. Codes will be sent to guests before arrival. If you arrive before 16.00 it is likely that we will still be cleaning and so you will not be granted access before 16.00.
We are providing guests with a handy hints guide and user manuals for all the appliances in plastic wallets. We are more than happy to help and will always be on the end of the phone but will try to avoid entering the cottage unless for an emergency.
We recommend bringing most of your food with you as there are still some long queues outside the stores in Penicuik & Edinburgh. If you wish to get a delivery you may need to book in advance. Please get your food delivered when you are home in the cottage as we can’t unpack shopping for you at the moment.
Guests will now be asked to bag all of their own rubbish, including any unused food they don’t wish to take home, putting it in the bins outside themselves.
Guests will be given bags and asked very kindly to strip their own beds and put the bed linen, towels and kitchen linen in bags for us.
Guests are asked to open windows on departure to change the air.
Guests will be provided with an anti-viral spray, rubber gloves and cloth for disinfecting anything that they have brought into the cottage that they may be worried about.
Guests are advised to wash their hands for 20 seconds throughout the day. We provide hand wash and moisturiser in all the cottages.
Please bring your own hand sanitiser, gloves and masks with you for your stay if you are venturing out.
If you fall ill within 14 days of leaving Eastside Cottages please let us know.
Our cleaning protocols
Firstly we would like to explain that we do not think that every one of our guest has the virus or is a carrier but for the sake of our risk assessment and cleaning protocols we have to make that assumption.
We are asking guests to leave promptly at 10.00
- having bagged and binned all rubbish
- having stripped the beds and put all bed linen, towels and kitchen linen in the bags provided.
- having opened all of the windows
Susan & Jenny with PPE (masks, gloves, aprons) will enter the cottages to remove the bagged rubbish and linen. They will also bag and remove all pillows, duvets and mattress protectors for cleaning.
We will then pre-clean disinfect the mattress, sofas, kitchen surfaces and bathrooms with Envirosafe SF (food safe) EN14476 for kitchens and Envirosafe Multi Surface EN14476.
We will load the dish washers with all the kitchen crockery, cutlery & glassware and put on 70 degree cycle.
We will then wash all pots, pans and items unable to be put in the dishwasher in hot soapy water.
Our cleaning team will arrive and clean to their usual extremely high standard. All soft furnishings will be steam cleaned. All walls are wiped, light switches and plug sockets cleaned. We have a hoover with a hepa filter to protect the cleaning staff and filter the air. We have changeable mop heads and will change between properties.
Once the cottage is clean the new pillows, duvets and mattress protectors and linen are brought into the cottages and put on the beds.
Susan & Jenny will quality control and do an after-clean disinfectant spay. Covering all high touch areas and surfaces identified as a risk in our cottage risk assessments. All light switches, door handles, remote controls, toaster & kettle switches, window openers, handrails will be disinfected as well as all surfaces including the floor, furniture, carpets & curtains.
All cleaning and disinfecting is done working back to the door from the furthest point in the cottage to avoid cross contamination. In food preparation areas we are using a food safe disinfectant, Envirosafe SF EN14476. We are not using disinfectant on bedding due to potential allergies and are instead laundering at 60 degrees.
Lastly we will disinfect all high touch outdoor surfaces, BBQs, seating, gate latches, door handles & the hot tub.
All linen will be washed at 60 degrees. To keep ourselves safe, the bagged linen will be left in a storage area for 72 hours before we unpack and start washing.
Due to the intensity of each clean we can no longer be as flexible in offering 3 or 4 night stays. We simply cannot do two change-overs to this standard in a week. There are a few shorter stays available in the woodshed if you look around where we have managed to fit them in.
We are keeping this predominantly 7 night minimum stay until the end of the year. We hope you understand that we just cannot cut any corners when keeping everyone safe.
As the R number changes and the Scottish Government advice adapts we too shall adapt and change. We hope to reintroduce our shorter breaks, home-baking & jigsaws soon! In the meantime please know that we are doing everything we can to keep everyone safe.
Stay safe everyone.