Photographs of packed pubs ‘made me want to cry’, says Nicola Sturgeon

Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: Getty Images

Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: Getty Images - Credit: POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Nicola Sturgeon has said that photographs of packed pubs 'made me want to cry' as she detailed a fresh coronavirus outbreak in Aberdeen.

11 new cases have been recorded in Aberdeen, where NHS Grampian is dealing with an outbreak.

While she said she could not yet say if these cases are linked to the outbreak, she warned the Aberdeen cluster is 'exactly what we feared when we reopened hospitality'.

On Sunday, it emerged 13 cases of coronavirus had been discovered among people who attended The Hawthorn Bar.

The owners said customers who were there on July 26 tested positive but it was confirmed by NHS Grampian they are only showing mild symptoms.


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Physical distancing measures were put in place within the pub and contact tracing is being carried out to identify any other potential cases.

At the latest Scottish government briefing, Sturgeon – who earlier warned that scenes of overcrowded bars could lead to the hospitality sector being shut down – said: 'Of course it's not just this incident in Aberdeen, across the county and across social media we are seeing evidence of people – and it is largely younger people – gathering together with little or no physical distancing in place.

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'I've seen pictures on social media over this weekend that, not to put too fine a point on it, made me want to cry looking at them.'

SNP MP Stephen Flynn had earlier tweeted two photos of Aberdeen city centre at the weekend, where a cluster of 13 cases of Covid-19 were discovered in The Hawthorn Bar.

The MP said he was 'scunnered' by the images, which showed dozens of people queuing to enter pubs in the city.

Sturgeon said it is likely there will be more Covid-19 clusters in Scotland 'in the weeks ahead'.

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