New Covid restrictions to come into place for bars and restaurants - here's everything you need to know

These are the new restrictions that will come into place on Monday 14 September.

Published 10th Sep 2020
Updated 9 th Aug 2023

First minister Nicola Sturgeon announced new Covid restrictions today, 10 September, which will come into force on Monday 14 September.

Nicola Sturgeon announced today that people can now only meet in groups of six or under as "the country still faces a battle to get and keep Covid under control".

With coronavirus cases rising, the First Minister warned that we are "currently in a precarious position".

As a result, she said she was forced to bring in new restrictions to guard against the further spread of the disease.

The R number - the average number of people infected by each person with coronavirus - could now be as high as 1.5, Ms Sturgeon warned.

Previously up to eight people from three households could meet indoors, while outside as many as 15 people from five households were allowed to gather.

This new rule applies to bars, restaurants and beer gardens, with Ms Sturgeon also announcing that it would be mandatory for customers to wear face masks "whenever they are moving around and not eating or drinking".

It will also be made compulsory - subject to some exceptions - for staff in the sector to wear a face covering.

Ms Sturgeon told MSPs: "I can confirm that we intend to change this, so that a maximum of six people from two households will now be permitted to meet together."

She said there would be "some limited exceptions" to the new rule, covering organised sports and places of worship.

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Children under the age of 12 will not count towards the limit of six people, with Ms Sturgeon also saying up to 20 people would be able to attend weddings, civil partnerships and funerals, as well as receptions and wakes.

The new limit will come into force legally on Monday, but Ms Sturgeon said people should follow "these stricter new limits on gatherings immediately".

Ms Sturgeon said the rise in Covid-19 cases - which increased by 161 in the past 24 hours to 22,039 - means putting these reopenings back is "the only responsible decision we can reach".

Ms Sturgeon added: "The announcements I have made so far are hard for people to hear. I know that after six long, hard months, we are still asking the public to make a lot of difficult sacrifices."

But she said while Scotland is "currently in a precarious position", she stressed it is "in a much better position than in late March", with prevalence of the virus lower and the rise in cases "not as rapid".

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Ms Sturgeon said: "Elimination is still, and must still be, our objective. But the reason we are being cautious again today is that we must continue to bear down on the rates of infection."

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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