Britain has withdrawn from the ISU European Short Track Championships ©Getty Images

Britain has withdrawn from the International Skating Union (ISU) European Short Track Speed Skating Championships in Gdańsk due to the travel restrictions in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A team of eight, including ten-time European champion Elise Christie, had been scheduled to travel to the Polish city on January 17. 

They would have then entered a bio-secure bubble for competition from January 22 to 24 and had already undergone one round of testing for COVID-19.

There were concerns the athletes would be stuck in Poland after the event because of the restrictions, forcing British Ice Skating to withdraw the team from the event.

"The continued travel disruption because of the COVID-19 pandemic has seen difficulties in finding viable ways for the team to travel to and from the event in Gdańsk," British Ice Skating said in a statement.

"A huge amount of time and effort has been put in to try and get the squad there, but with extremely limited flights and constantly changing international rules and medical guidance this became too difficult.

"Due to the ever-changing COVID-19 restrictions in place across Europe there was the very real possibility that the squad could have become stuck in Poland with very few options open for return to the UK. 

"The number one priority of the national governing body is athlete safety, and it was with this in mind that the decision was made."

Elise Christie revealed the British team were
Elise Christie revealed the British team were "devastated" about withdrawing from the ISU European Short Track Championships ©Getty Images

Niall Treacy, Jonathan Moody and Holly Hoyland had been set to join Christie in the individual events, while Westley Yates, Ethan Treacy, Charlotte Hayward and Isabelle Roberts had been selected for the relay team.

The 30-year-old Christie said the team were "devastated" but had been concerned preparations for the ISU World Short Track Championships in Dordrecht would be impacted if they travelled to Poland. 

"After a tough year for everyone it’s with a heavy heart that the team have to withdraw from the European Championships," she said. 

"We are devastated as everyone has been working so hard and the team has made massive improvements. 

"However, our health and safety must be our number one priority.

"There was also a significant risk that our preparations for the World Championships in February would have been severely impacted by the potential travel disruption."