What level is Glasgow in? Is the city still in level 3 after Nicola Sturgeon update - and what the rules mean

The city is the only area in Scotland still in level three - with a ban on drinking alcohol inside

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced that Glasgow will remain in level three of Scotland’s Covid tier system for at least another week.

Speaking at a daily briefing at St Andrew’s House in Edinburgh, where she was joined by National Clinical Director Jason Leitch, Sturgeon confirmed that Covid restrictions will not change yet as Covid cases are still high.

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Glasgow is the only area in Scotland experiencing such tight restrictions, with the rest of the country having moved to level 2 on 17 May.

Glasgow will remain in Tier 3, with alcohol not permitted indoors (Picture: Getty Images)

The city’s 600,000 population will continue to face travel restrictions and the hospitality sector will not be allowed to operate at full capacity.

So, why has Sturgeon taken this decision and what does it mean for Glasgow? This is what you need to know.

What restrictions apply in Glasgow?

The level three restrictions mean people are not allowed to meet in each other's homes, and pubs and restaurants are not able to sell alcohol indoors.

According to the Scottish Government’s website, tier three rules include only being able to meet in groups of six from two households in public indoor spaces - such as restaurants, cafes and pubs.

You can meet in groups of up to six from six households outdoors, in a private garden or a public place, like a park or a beer garden.

You cannot leave your local authority for anything other than essential purposes - such as work, informal care or to attend a funeral.

Pubs and restaurants are permitted to serve alcohol outdoors and serve food indoors until 8pm. Currently, you cannot have an alcoholic drink with food while you’re sitting indoors.

Gyms cannot hold group exercise classes indoors and leisure and entertainment venues such as cinemas, theatres, nightclubs and concert halls, and stadiums must remain closed.

What did Nicola Sturgeon say about her decision?

The First Minister said that her decision to keep Glasgow in level three was “very difficult” but the continued rise in cases remains a significant concern for the government.

She said: "The view of the National Incident Management Team is that it would be premature to move Glasgow out of level three immediately, while the situation remains so fragile."

Around half of new cases in Glasgow are now attributed to the Indian variant, though the rise has stabilised and there has been no significant increase in hospitalisations.

234 of the 641 positive cases recorded in Scotland today (28 May) were recorded in Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

Health experts said the lack of severe cases, leading to hospital treatment, indicates it is young people contracting the Indian mutant variant.

90 people are currently being treated for Covid in the city - a rise of seven from yesterday (27 May).

The number of new cases in the city’s Southside area - where Indian variant cases are most prevalent - have also stabilised and increased testing in the G41 and G42 postal areas has also been carried out in a bid to catch cases early and minimise the variant spreading further.

Mobile vaccination centres have also been set up throughout the city.

When will Glasgow’s level next be reviewed?

Sturgeon said she is hopeful Glasgow will move down to level two, from Saturday 5 June.

The Scottish Government is also keeping a close eye on three other council areas - Clackmannanshire, Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire - where there are relatively high numbers of Covid cases.

Public health teams have analysed the data from these areas and currently feel that the number of cases compared with the low population in these areas means the spread of Covid is manageable under tier two restrictions.

The Scottish government has said it will make an announcement on Wednesday 2 June about the potential to move into tier two for the following weekend - giving businesses three days notice.

The rest of mainland Scotland is currently due to move to level one on 7 June, and level zero - meaning something close to normality - on 28 June.

How have Glasgow businesses responded to the decision?

Glasgow’s businesses, particularly those in the hospitality sector, have expressed their outrage at the lack of clarity on whether they can reopen.

Many businesses have been operating at low capacity for over 270 days now, with some pubs not able to open at all under current circumstances.

The lack of forewarning about reopening means businesses are ordering in stock, scheduling the return of staff and spending large sums of money preparing their venues to reopen in line with social distancing guidelines.

Opposition parties have demanded urgent action from the Scottish Government, to support the city to reopen to the same degree as the rest of the country.