Sturgeon told by schoolgirl 'I hope you don’t put us back into lockdown'

During the visit, the First Minister refused to rule out the re-imposition of restrictions

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A nine-year-old school pupil has told Scotland’s First Minister she hopes lockdown measures in Scotland do not return.

Nicola Sturgeon visited an after-school programme in the Castlemilk area of Glasgow, run by Indigo Childcare Group, ahead of the expected announcement of increased childcare for the poorest families to help them back into work, training or study.

Covid cases have been rising in recent weeks, with the peak higher than at any point during the pandemic and showing little signs of slowing.

Figures went above 7,000 new cases in a single day for the first time on Monday, according to government figures.

But, as the First Minister settled down to paint with some of the youngsters, nine-year-old Carley-Jo embarked on her not-so-subtle lobbying attempt.

“I hope you don’t put us back into lockdown,” she said.

“I hope not as well,” the First Minister replied, with a laugh.

When asked if she did not enjoy lockdown, Carley-Jo replied: “No.”

She added: “I heard you were self-isolating?”

Ms Sturgeon was considered a close contact of someone who tested positive for Covid-19 last week, but was allowed to stop self-isolating after testing negative for the virus.

“I did for a wee while,” she explained. “But then I tested negative so I was OK.”

Carley-Jo painted a message urging people to “stay safe”, written under an image of a heart which she showed the First Minister, and they held aloft for the cameras.

Some 7,065 cases were reported on Monday, just the second time the 7,000 mark has been surpassed since the start of the pandemic.

During the visit, the First Minister again refused to rule out the re-imposition of restrictions, but urged Scots to continue to follow current guidance.

“Nobody wants to re-impose restrictions, which is why we have put such emphasis in recent days on compliance with the current mitigations in place,” she said.

“But the Scottish Government, as you would expect any responsible government to do, keeps the situation under very close review.

“Cabinet will look at the current situation and consider whether there is more that needs to be done.”

She added: “We are seeing a continued rise in cases and cases are at far too high a level.

“We’ve not seen the rapid doubling of cases that we thought we might be facing about a week ago, I would have feared cases might be at an even higher level by now, but that doesn’t give us any room for complacency, particularly when the health service is under so much pressure from Covid.”