EXTRA police officers will be on patrol across Dumbarton and the Vale this weekend following the easing of some lockdown restrictions.

Uniformed Police Scotland officers on foot, bicycle and mobile patrol will be backed up by national resources from the service's operational support division and road policing teams.

The move comes after First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed Scotland's move into 'phase one' of the country's route out of lockdown from Friday onwards.

However, it's thought likely that the slight relaxation of some of the rules, combined with the warm weather which began on Thursday and is expected to last through the weekend, may tempt more people to leave their homes and head for tourist hotspots – despite pleas by Ms Sturgeon, the police and other authorities not to do so.

Claims began to circulate on social media of larger than usual numbers of people gathering at popular visitor spots near Loch Lomond and elsewhere.

Chief Constable Iain Livingstone said: "The regulations are clear: people should only leave the house for very limited purposes, for example for basic necessities, for exercise or recreation, for medical needs or travelling for work which cannot be done from home.

"We are asking people to take personal responsibility to do the right thing and remember the purpose of these measures is to aid the collective effort to protect the NHS and save lives by preventing the virus from spreading.

"Our officers will continue to engage with the public, explain the legislation and guidance and encourage compliance. We will use enforcement as a last resort only where there is a clear breach of the legislation.

"We recognise that people have made significant sacrifices until now and while the temptation may be to head straight for one of our beauty spots, we would ask people to use their judgement and avoid going to places which are normally busy during the good weather."

In addition to using extra national Police Scotland resources, local officers are also expected to work in partnership with British Transport Police to monitor people's adherence to the new lockdown regulations.

Mr Livingstone continued: "Complying with the legislation about meeting only one other household outdoors at any one time and following the Scottish Government's guidance about avoiding travelling long distances will stop our parks, beaches, lochs and hills from becoming over-crowded and help ensure appropriate physical distancing is maintained, reducing the spread of coronavirus.

"We want people to enjoy our outdoor spaces safely and our officers will be robustly tackling crime and anti-social behaviour in our communities."