The Scottish Government has set out a timetable for easing out of lockdown, over the next two months, including opening of non-essential retail and work in peoples’ homes.
Stay at Home regulations will be lifted on April 2 and replaced with guidance to stay local, with non-essential click and collect able to open from April 5.
It is expected further easing of lockdown measures on April 25, when all retail premises will be allowed to open, and non-essential work in peoples’ homes may also resume.
Currently installers can only complete essential work in people’s homes or can work in empty properties.
Scotland is still the last country in Great Britain to open non-essential retail, which includes kbb showrooms, with England and Wales expected to open on April 12.
The First Minister also indicated that in early June it is hoped that Scotland could move to Level 1 and by end of June to level 0.
Grants of up to £7,500 will be available to retailers in April to help businesses re-open progressively.
These one-off re-start grants will replace its ongoing Strategic Framework Business Fund (SFBF) payments and will provide more money up front to help with the costs of re-opening.
Eligible businesses must have applied to the SFBF by March 22 in order to receive these payments.
The last four-weekly SFBF payment of up to £3,000 will be paid on March 22, as scheduled.
Targeted restart grants for businesses that are not in scope for the current SFBF support package may be considered if the Scottish Government receives further consequentials from the UK Government.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “It is not possible to provide specific dates or details for coming out of lockdown beyond 17 May – that will depend on what impact there is from the changes already made.
“However my hope and ambition is that from early June, all of Scotland will effectively be in level 1 of the levels system, allowing for a further easing of restrictions – and possibly moving to level 0 in late June.
“Thanks to the sacrifices we all made three months ago, and the success of the vaccination programme we are now in a much better and brighter position, with well-earned optimism as we look ahead to the summer.”