Lockdown restrictions extended in western Scotland

7 September 2020, 18:00 | Updated: 7 September 2020, 18:22

Coronavirus restrictions have been expanded in Scotland
Coronavirus restrictions have been expanded in Scotland. Picture: PA

By Maddie Goodfellow

Coronavirus restrictions on home visits in areas of western Scotland have been expanded to cover Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire following a rise in cases.

It comes the week after measures were re-imposed in Glasgow city, West Dunbartonshire and East Renfrewshire.

The new restrictions will take effect from midnight, and now apply to more than 1.1 million people living in the five council areas.

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she hopes the new restrictions will stop the virus spreading.

However, she has warned that there is a "definite trend" of rising case numbers across Scotland.

The measures are targeted at household meetings, with Ms Sturgeon saying it was "still the view of public health teams that the significant factor driving transmission is people meeting up in their own homes".

A total of 146 people have tested positive for coronavirus in Scotland in the last 24 hours, with 208 positive cases reported on Sunday.

It comes after FIrst Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the Scottish Government may need to “put the brakes” on a planned easing of lockdown due to a “dangerous” rise in cases.

The First Minister described the numbers as a "definite trend" that has to be taken seriously and said the country risks “going back to a mounting toll of illness and death" if action to combat coronavirus is stopped.

However, she said the country can only move from phase three to phase four of lockdown if the virus is no longer considered a significant threat and, while no decision has been made yet, “it is clear that will not be the case”.

Cases are rising across the UK, with 2,988 confirmed cases on Sunday, the largest rise since May 23, when 2,959 cases were recorded.

Nicola Sturgeon has said there is a "definite trend" of rising case numbers across Scotland
Nicola Sturgeon has said there is a "definite trend" of rising case numbers across Scotland. Picture: PA

Speaking on LBC's new phone-in programme Call the Cabinet, Health Secretary Matt Hancock today issued a stark warning against complacency in the fight against Covid-19, describing cases rise as "concerning".

Mr Hancock said the increase was primarily among more affluent younger people, between 17 and 21, who were not following social distancing rules.

Ms Sturgeon echoed this, saying “even if it starts in the younger, healthier, part of the population, which it appears to be doing, because younger people are interacting more, it won't necessarily stay in that part of the population.

"It will eventually seep into older and more vulnerable groups. To be blunt, some young people will go on to infect their older friends or relatives.”