HAIRDRESSERS across the Wee County rejoiced this week as the easing of lockdown rules meant their chairs were filled once again.

Salons and barbers, along with some non-essential retail shops and click and collect services, were given the green light to reopen on Monday, April 5, following months of enforced closure due to the most recent Covid-19 lockdown.

After months without haircuts, people in Clacks were quick to fill the bookings this week.

While the vaccination programme continues to hit milestone after milestone, case numbers in Forth Valley continue to fluctuate.

Hairdressers will be hoping the progress made recently will mean they can keep their doors open from here on out.

Stuart Stenhouse, owner of Tillicoultry Barbers, was delighted with how busy his store was on its reopening earlier this week.

He said: "It's good getting a bit of normality back after being stuck in the house."

Stuart has owned the barber shop for around five-and-a-half years and has been working in the trade for 30 years.

He says his customers are thrilled to finally get their trim.

"Honestly, you wouldn't believe it," he said. "They're over the moon.

A queue of bookings waits outside Tillicoultry Barbers on its reopening day after the latest lockdown

THE LOCKS ARE OFF: A queue of bookings waits outside Tillicoultry Barbers on its reopening day after the latest lockdown. Picture by John Patton

"Mostly on Monday morning it was the OAPs, because the younger ones' mums are giving them a zip right over whereas all the older boys are saying 'thank god you're back!'".

Asked what kind of haircuts have come through the door since he reopened, Stuart doesn't mince his words.

"There's been some states," he laughed. "To be perfectly honest, there's been some crackers."

The statement is echoed by Colleen Hislop, co-owner of Tullibody's Goodfellas.

With barbers and hairdressers closed across the Wee County for months, people have had to take matters – and scissors – into their own hands.

For Colleen and fellow owner Lorraine Jack, the arduous first day back was worth it to get into work again.

Colleen said: "Yeah, some very dodgy haircuts. Some people haven't had a haircut since back in December, some even before that so it's been a nightmare.

"Then obviously having to deal with haircuts that people have tried to cut themselves, but we got there."

She continued: "Everybody's just glad to see us back, that's been since December [the shop's been closed] so it's been a long time.

"Some of the haircuts were terrible so they're chuffed that we're back."

Colleen, speaking after a non-stop first day back, joked: "I need a week off now, we're knackered: our backs are breaking."