IT has been two years since the first Covid-19 case was reported in Scotland in 2020.

At the time there were 89,070 cases throughout the world - a figure which has since topped 437 million. 

Since that first case, a cumulative 1,390,996 positive Covid-19 cases have been reported in Scotland. 

By March 20, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon had warned Scots they were facing the "biggest challenge of our lifetimes" in efforts to stop the spread of the virus. 

READ MORE: Long Covid Scotland: 'Some days I can't even lift a cup to my mouth because I'm so tired'

The same day pubs, restaurants and gyms were all ordered to close for the first time but not the last. 

Scotland was put in its first lockdown on March 24 with the first easing of the measures not taking place until May 11 when restrictions on outdoor exercise were lifted. 

In April, that year the NHS Louisa Jordan field hospital opened at the SECC in Glasgow. 

A phased out map out of lockdown began on May 29 following an announcement by Nicola Sturgeon. 


June 7 marked the first day Scotland recorded no new coronavirus deaths since the start of the lockdown. The country also entered phase two of lockdown easing, but it was not until July and phase three that hospitals reopened to visitors and shopping centres welcomed back customers. 

July 15 marked the first day hairdressers, indoor pubs and restaurants opened their doors since the initial lockdown began.

It also saw galleries and museums welcome back visitors. 

HeraldScotland: A shopper wears a protective face mask in Edinburgh’s Princes Street

In August, pupils were welcomed back to schools but from the end of the month, high school pupils were expected to wear face masks in communal areas. 

However, the next month cases once again started to rise and nationwide restrictions affecting pub closure times were announced on September 23. 

READ MORE: Long Covid: What have we learned two years on?

This new raft of restrictions included new limits on social gatherings and indoor spaces. 


Towards the end of the year, a five-level tier system was introduced in Scotland allowing for targeted restrictions in areas with increasing cases. 

The framework came into force on November 2. 

On November 19, it is announced that Scotland will begin administering its first Covid-19 vaccines. 

The first person to receive the Pfizer jab in Scotland was Edinburgh nurse Andrew Mencnarowski.

In Glasgow, the first person to receive the jag was Paula McMahon, 48, a bank nurse for immunisations with the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde. 


Just before the start of the festive period, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced a 5-day window of eased restrictions would not be going ahead. 

Christmas Day became the only day when Scots were allowed to see family members in indoor settings. 

From Boxing Day,  all of Scotland entered full level four restrictions, including the closure of non-essential retail and hospitality. 

By February 10, more than one million people had received their first dose of the Covid vaccine. 

While schools were initially meant to remain closed only until January 11, 2021 it was not until mid-March secondary pupils began to return to schools.

In March, care homes also started to welcome visitors for residents. 

From April 16, travel within Scotland for outdoor socialising, recreation and exercise is welcomed back. 

Regular home testing is also brought in this month after the Scottish Government announced free lateral flow tests would be available to everyone from April 26, 2021.

HeraldScotland: File photo dated 08/01/22 of a testing solution dripping into a Covid 19 lateral flow testing strip. Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting has criticised the Government for plans to end free lateral flow tests. Speaking to Sky on Trevor Phillips on

The whole of Scotland moved to Level 0 restrictions on July 19, but it was not until August 9 when nightclubs were finally allowed to reopen. 

In December, after the Omicron variant began to ramp up cases, Scots were told to limit socialising to three households. This advice did not apply to Christmas Day. 

Restrictions were brought back on Boxing Day in 2021 with limits on public events. It brought down the number of people allowed at outdoor events to 500, while indoor numbers were limited to 100 standing or 200 seated. 

These restrictions were in place until January 24 this year. 

In January, the self-isolation period was also cut from ten days to 7. 

Most recently, on February 22, Nicola Sturgeon announced the vaccine certification would no longer be required from Monday 28. 

All requirements on the use of face coverings and contact tracing are expected to be lifted on March 21.