Local authority restriction levels to be announced

Five-tier alert system, ranging from level zero to four, will come into effect on Monday.

Local authority restriction levels to be announced Getty Images
Coronavirus: FM to announce how local authorities fall into each category.

The First Minister is due to outline the levels of coronavirus restrictions to be placed on each of Scotland’s 32 council areas later.

The five-tier alert system, ranging from zero to four, will come into effect on Monday after the proposals were backed by the Scottish Parliament.

Nicola Sturgeon is expected to announce how local authorities will fall into each category at First Minister’s Questions on Thursday.

Local leaders in Lanarkshire have pleaded with the Scottish Government not to impose the toughest coronavirus restrictions in the area – warning they could have “potentially catastrophic impacts” on local businesses.

North and South Lanarkshire are the only two authorities where the toughest restrictions are being considered immediately.

If the area is placed in level four, bars and restaurants would remain closed while non-essential shops would also have to shut, along with hairdressers, gyms, libraries and visitor attractions.

Much of central Scotland, including Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as Dundee, could be placed straight into level three when the tiers are introduced from Monday.

In this tier, bars and restaurants are not permitted to sell alcohol either indoors or outside, and must close by 6pm.

Sturgeon indicated the Highlands Council area, as well as Orkney, Shetland, the Western Isles and Moray, could all go straight into level one – the second lowest tier – in the new system.

While level one rules people can meet in other’s homes again – six people from two households are permitted to meet indoors in such areas – the First Minister said the restriction on indoor gatherings would remain in place “for a period as an extra precaution” as Scotland transitions to the new system.