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Lockdown easing in Scotland: All the key dates and restrictions following Nicola Sturgeon’s announcement

People can meet up in groups of six outdoors from Friday
People can meet up in groups of six outdoors from Friday

Scotland’s route out of lockdown was accelerated slightly today, with first minister Nicola Sturgeon appearing at an unscheduled briefing.

She announced that some rules are changing from this Friday, offering a bit more freedom to people in the country.

And, Ms Sturgeon also confirmed that plans to reopen hospitality premises and shops from April 26 were also going ahead.

This is due to the virus being suppressed across the country, thanks to the current lockdown and the success of the vaccination programme.

But what is changing and when?

From Friday, April 16

You can now travel elsewhere in Scotland

Restrictions on travel across Scotland will be dropped, with residents able to leave their local authority area for the first time since before Christmas.

This has been done so families and friends can once again meet up in person in an outdoor setting.

You should only leave your local authority area for socialising, recreation and exercise.

Groups of six people from six different households will also be able to meet up in parks, gardens, and for outdoor recreation.

From Monday, April 26

Shops will reopen

Cross-border travel into England and Wales will be allowed from this date, with this information newly announced today.

Pubs and restaurants can reopen outdoors for alcoholic drinks and meals, and indoors but cannot serve alcohol.

Hotels will also be allowed to open.

Non-essential shops like Primark and TK Maxx will be allowed to open for the first time since before Christmas.

All of Scotland will move into Level 3, including the islands.

From Monday, May 17

Nicola Sturgeon made the announcement today

Ms Sturgeon expects all of Scotland to move into Level 2.

The Scottish Government has yet to publish any information about what this will entail.

From Monday, June 7

Scotland is expected to move into Level 1.

From Monday, June 28

Scotland is expected to move into Level 0.

No dates

No date has been set for the resumption of overseas travel, as Ms Sturgeon seeks a four-nation plan for this.

She says that it will be limited for a while longer but will not be kept in place for longer than necessary.

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