Lockdown to ease across most of Scotland but some areas retain tougher measures

Lockdown to ease across most of Scotland but some areas retain tougher measures

Covid-19 restrictions will be eased in parts of Scotland on Saturday.

But much of the country will retain tougher measures due to spikes in cases of the virus, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

The First Minister updated MSPs in the Scottish Parliament on coronavirus restrictions.

She said parts of Scotland could move from Level 2 to Level 1 of the five tiers of restrictions, which run from 0-4.

But Edinburgh and Midlothian, Dundee, East Dunbartonshire, Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire, the three Ayrshire areas, North and South Lanarkshire and Clackmannanshire and Stirling will remain in Level 2.

Glasgow, which was kept in Level 3 when measures eased in the rest of the country on May 17, will move to Level 2 on Saturday, with Ms Sturgeon saying the outbreak there had stabilised with case numbers falling slightly.

Glaswegians will be able to drink alcohol indoors, meet in private residences, and hug loved ones from the weekend.

Those in Level 1 areas can meet outside and indoors in public places in larger groups.

Numbers at events, weddings and funerals can also increase, and pubs can open slightly later indoors.

Scotland currently has the highest rate of new cases of Covid-19 of the four nations of the UK.

But Ms Sturgeon said there are “many parts of mainland Scotland where cases are at very low levels and broadly stable or where case numbers might appear to be rising, but we are assured that they relate to clusters that are being managed”.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross previously said areas should not be left behind if restrictions are relaxed.

He said: “Everyone understands that there will be a need for local, targeted measures when an outbreak occurs.

“But leaving behind whole areas should be ruled out. Sweeping measures that unnecessarily hurt a whole city or council area are unfair on businesses and local people waiting to get on with their lives.”

Mr Ross argued: “Selectively imposing restrictions and targeting resources at smaller areas is entirely possible. The blanket council-wide approach is not the only plausible option.

“The one-size-fits-all approach should be replaced by targeted interventions to tackle local outbreaks.”

Published: by Radio NewsHub