And so after 122 long days since we were placed into a level four lockdown on Boxing Day, we have emerged from hibernation and life as we once knew it took tentative steps towards resuming.

We popped down to Saltcoats on Monday, April 26, as cafés, bars, and restaurants opened their doors to customers once again.

We snapped many happy punters in the beer garden outside at the Albion Bar on Dockhead Street.

The weather could have been better, but that didn’t stop these customers from becoming the first to order a cold one from the bar.

Temperatures were scraping into double figures and it was a bit fresh but most didn’t care, saying they were just so happy to be able to get a proper drink for the first time in so long. They said they were glad to be back supporting their local.

Our photographer, Charlie Gilmour snapped the happy scenes:

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Happy puntersHappy punters

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: A time for reunions A time for reunions

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Welcome backWelcome back

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Let's not forget these heroes behind the bar at The Albion. Denise Young, Rosie Todd, and Laura Local.Let's not forget these heroes behind the bar at The Albion. Denise Young, Rosie Todd, and Laura Local.

Elsewhere, along Dockhead Street shoppers were milling about and there were queues outside several of the shops.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Dockhead Street shoppers, SaltcoatsDockhead Street shoppers, Saltcoats

As well as pubs, bars, and restaurants, gyms and swimming pools, non essential shops, museums and libraries, and close contact services such as nail-salons and tattoo parlours were allowed to reopen.

Travel between Scotland, England and Wales is permitted once more as well.

International travel remains prohibited, but from Monday holiday accommodation across Scotland was allowed to start welcoming guests, so there are plenty of options for staycations.