When will UK lockdown end? Date Scotland will enter phase 3 - and what rules will change in July
People in Scotland can look forward to a further easing of restrictions this week, as the country is expected to enter the third phase of its lockdown exit plan.
Following the Scottish Government’s next lockdown review on Thursday (9 July), a number of changes are due to come into effect, including rules around meeting family and friends and the reopening of further businesses.
Here are all the changes you need to know as Scotland moves into the next phase of lifting lockdown.
What restrictions will be lifted?
Phase three will introduce a significant number of changes as more of the economy is opened up, and rules on seeing family and friends will become more relaxed.
Here are all the major changes to expect in July:
People can meet in extended groups outdoors, with physical distancing in place, and households can meet indoors with up to a maximum of two other households.
Organised outdoor contact sports can resume for children and young people.
All dental practices can begin to see registered patients for non-aerosol routine care.
There will be increased capacity within community optometry practices for emergency and essential eye care.
Non-essential shops inside shopping centres can re-open, following government guidance and with physical distancing measures in place.
All holiday accommodation will be permitted to reopen, following relevant government guidance.
Indoor hospitality venues can reopen, subject to physical distancing rules and public health advice, along with museums, galleries, cinemas, monuments and libraries, with tickets issued in advance.
Hairdressers and barbers can repen with enhanced hygiene measures.
All childcare providers can open subject to individual provider arrangements.
After 23 July
Non-essential offices and call centres can re-open following implementation of relevant guidance, but working from home and working flexibly will remain the default.
Universities and colleges can start a phased return, with a blended model of remote learning and limited on campus learning where a priority.
Places of worship can re-open for congregational services, communal prayer and contemplation, with physical distancing and limited numbers, and there will be an easing of restrictions on attendance at funerals, marriages and civil partnerships.
When will the UK lockdown end?
To progress to the fourth and final stage of the lockdown exit plan, the virus must have effectively ceased to be a signifcant issue in Scotland.
This could be due to the development of an coronavirus vaccine that has been distributed on a sufficeint scale in the country, or an effective treatment for the virus is made available across Scotland.
As such, the virus must remain suppressed to very low levels, or completely eradicated, in order to no longer be considered a significant threat to public health. The Scottish government must be confident that the virus can be controlled without the restrictions still in force from phase three in order to progress to the fourth and final phase.
The Test and Protect programme will still be fully operational even in phase four, and it is expected that this final phase of transition through the pandemic will not be reached for many months.