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A new lockdown similar to last March comes into force from midnight tonight.
In a statement this afternoon, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the tougher restrictions were necessary to give vaccines a head start and win the race against Covid.
The most difficult decision of all was that schools will remain shut until at least February 1.
Staying at home will be a legal requirement again, only being allowed to leave home for essential purposes. People must work from home if they can.
New guidelines will be given to people in the shielding category, said the First Minister who added places of worship will also close again except for broadcasting services and conducting funerals and weddings with only restricted numbers able to attend – 20 for funerals and five for weddings. No wakes will be allowed.
Interaction between households will be limited. While the frequency of exercise outdoors is not restricted, from tomorrow there can only be a maximum of two people from two households. Under 11s are not included.
No one is allowed to travel into or out of Scotland unless essential.
During her address she said Scotland was about four weeks behind the position in London and South East England, saying the situation now was more concerning now since March last year, close to reaching April’s peak.
NHS services in Scotland are coping presently but the situation is getting more challenging.
The First Minister gave assurance the restrictions would not be kept in place any longer than necessary.
‘I’m sorry to ask this after nine hard months but for everyone’s sake and safety please stick with it,’ she said.
These rules will apply across the Scottish mainland until at least the end of January, and will be kept under review.
Island areas will remain in level three but will be monitored carefully.
More than 100,000 people across Scotland have received the first dose of vaccine so far.