New restrictions to apply from 6pm, Friday 18 December

East Lothian Council Depute Leader, Norman Hampshire, has expressed disappointment after today’s (Tuesday 15 December) announcement by the Scottish Government that the county was moving back into Covid Protection Level 3.

Cllr Hampshire said: “This is very disappointing news for the residents and businesses of East Lothian but sadly understandable due to the high infection rates in the county. In recent weeks East Lothian has gone from the lowest transmission rates in the Lothians to one of the highest and placing the county into Level 3 aims to tackle and reduce further infection rates.”

“I am very aware of the hard work carried out by local traders to ensure both their staff and customers’ safety and it is particularly difficult that they will need to follow further restrictions in the lead up to Christmas. Each of us though have a responsibility to continue to heed current health guidelines to protect ourselves and family members. I fully understand, after nine months of various restrictions and particularly at this time of year, people want to meet friends and wider family members and enjoy some celebrations but we need to recognise that this year is different. However tempting it may be, please don’t lower your guard now and continue to follow the advice to help prevent the spread of infection.”

In Level 3 people are advised not to meet with anyone outside of their household within their home and the maximum number of people who can meet indoors in a public (not a home) place is 6 which can be from up to 2 separate households. 

Also restaurants, cafes, pubs and bars can open indoors and outdoors for the consumption of food and non-alcoholic drinks. Alcoholic drinks cannot be served. Last entry is 5pm and all venues must be closed and all customers off the premises by 6pm. 

The current advice continues for people to follow FACTS which includes wearing face coverings where appropriate, avoiding crowds, washing hands regularly and using hand sanitisers in shops and public venues, observing physical distancing of 2 metres and seeking health advice if concerned about possible symptoms.

Daily updates on Covid transmission rates by council area can be viewed on Public Health Scotland’s website.

Published: Tuesday, 15th December 2020