Scotland begins to ease out of coronavirus lockdown

People are now allowed to meet people from one other household outdoors and play sports such as golf and tennis.

Phase one: Lockdown begins to ease. Getty
Phase one: Lockdown begins to ease.

The first phase of the Scottish Government’s four-stage plan to ease coronavirus restrictions has begun.

People are now allowed to meet people from one other household outdoors and play sports such as golf and tennis as the gradual route out of lockdown gets under way.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed on Thursday she was satisfied the process could begin safely.

It means people are allowed to go outside as much as they like, sit in parks and other public spaces and sunbathe.

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They can meet people from one other household at a time, provided the meeting is outside and they socially distance from each other.

That includes in public areas like a park or a private garden but the total number of people meeting up should be a maximum of eight.

However, Scots planning barbecues and picnics have been told not to share cutlery, plates or cups with other households as a precaution against Covid-19.

Neither should they go into anyone else’s house or meet people from other households indoors.

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As lockdown measures are eased and the country prepares for periods of nice weather, police have urged the public to avoid “normally busy” areas.

Chief constable Iain Livingstone has warned of overcrowding at parks, beaches and lochs.

“We recognise that people have made significant sacrifices until now, and while the temptation may be to head straight for one of our beauty spots, we would ask people to use their judgment and avoid going to places which are normally busy during the good weather,” he said.

“Complying with the legislation about meeting only one other household outdoors at any one time and following the Scottish Government’s guidance about avoiding travelling long distances will stop our parks, beaches, lochs and hills from becoming overcrowded and help ensure appropriate physical distancing is maintained, reducing the spread of coronavirus.

“We want people to enjoy our outdoor spaces safely and our officers will be robustly tackling crime and anti-social behaviour in our communities.”

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