With a new five-tier system coming into place from Monday, hospitality firms in the region are anxiously awaiting confirmation of what level of restrictions they will face.
In the Scottish Parliament today, the first minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed final decisions on which tier would apply to each region will be announced on Thursday – and she said most of Scotland, including Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, would likely move to Level 2, with the Highlands, Orkney, Shetland, the Western Isles and Moray potentially moving to Level 1.
The central belt and Dundee could see Level 3 restrictions.
If confirmed, Level 2 status (the third highest of the five tiers) would be similar to the current arrangements with time restrictions on hospitality still applying – but, crucially, alcohol will be permitted to be sold indoors with a main meal until 8pm. Outdoors the curfew would be extended to 10.30pm.
Takeaways and deliveries of both alcohol and food would continue as per the current arrangements.
Level 1 restrictions would mean alcohol would be permitted to be served indoors without ordering a main meal, with a curfew closing time of 10.30pm.
When it comes to socialising, the current measures would remain in place – so no indoor mixing at home beyond those already living in a household, and only up to six people from two households are permitted to meet outside and in hospitality settings.
In its Strategic Framework document, the Scottish Government offers the following explanation around “Level 2 and 3” restrictions.
“Within Levels 2 and 3, we would expect to see increased incidence of the virus, with multiple clusters and increased community transmission. There would be a graduated series of protective measures to tackle the virus, focusing on key areas of risk – broadly, indoor settings where household mixing takes place with less, or less well-observed, physical distancing and mitigations. The measures would be intended to be in place for relatively short periods (2-4 weeks), and only for as long as required to get the virus down to a low, sustainable level.”
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