With another Scottish lockdown potentially looming, shoppers are making a dash to get their Christmas purchases early.
Thousands hit the shops in England on Sunday after the previous evening’s announcement by Prime Minister Boris Johnson that a new lockdown will begin south of the border on Thursday.
This means the number of days available to buy presents will be cut in half.
Amid fears that Scotland could be about to follow suit, retail bosses north of the border have observed an increase in footfall as shoppers rush to get ready for the festive season.
Jackie Cuddy, manager of the Eastgate Shopping Centre in Inverness, said: “We are seeing that people are already shopping early for Christmas.
“This weekend, retailers were already telling me that they had been busy with Christmas shoppers.
“Retailers have been savvy too and have offers on to attract these early shoppers.
“We are very fortunate in the Highlands to be in level one, but you can never rule out another lockdown in the future – particularly with what is happening now in England.”
Manager of the Bon Accord Centre in Aberdeen, Craig Stevenson, assured shoppers that the mall remained safe to visit.
“Bon Accord is following the most up to date government restrictions to keep our customers, retailers and staff safe,” he said.”