Western Isles – Level 4 Designation

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar has today issued a full update on service impacts following the announcement that the Western Isles will move into Level 4 from midnight tonight, Friday 29 January 2021.

Comhairle Leader, Roddie Mackay, said: “The designation of the Western Isles as a level 4 COVID area is disappointing but not entirely unexpected given the recent rise in cases and the developing situation at the Western Isles Hospital in Stornoway. Our communities continue to make stringent efforts to protect themselves and others and it is imperative, now more than ever before, that we maintain and indeed – wherever possible – increase these efforts.

“While this will inevitably cause concern in our communities, we are confident in local resilience and commitment which will help us get through this challenging period. We met with the Deputy First Minister and the Chief Medical Officer this morning and continue to hold discussions with Scottish Government and Public Health on COVID related matters.”

Full details of the level 4 implications can be found on the Scottish Government website.

Comhairle Offices

Comhairle offices will be closed other than to essential personnel only.

Education and Schools

It is essential that parents only make use of key worker provision in schools when it is absolutely necessary to do so and when there is no alternative childcare available. The provision is only available for children whose parents are required to attend physically at work. The Comhairle would ask that local employers provide flexibility for staff to be able to support childcare and home working. Hubs will remain fully operational for those children assessed as vulnerable. This provision is only available where a parent is in a role designated as a key worker and is required to physically attend work.

Care Services

Care Homes are essential visits only. Care at home service users are reminded that they should ensure no-one else is in their domestic homes when care staff are visiting. Day services will continue for service users assessed as critical/essential need.

Social Care

Community Justice Social Work services will be impacted with unpaid work placements ceasing. Court activity will follow the Justice Sector Guidance. Other services will continue with virtual contacts where appropriate and necessary in person services will continue following Public Health guidance.

Any service users with concerns should contact their social worker who can talk their individual circumstances through with them.

Children’s Services

No immediate service level changes for Children’s Services.

Sport and Leisure

All sport and leisure facilities will close.


All Comhairle Libraries will close.


All Comhairle Museums will remain closed.


No immediate impact. The Comhairle would remind bus users to follow the safety and hygiene measures.

All services subject to further disruption. If there are any local care related issues, you may also contact FAIRE on 01851 701702.