Today, the pop-up coronavirus testing centre in Spinney Hill has had to pause their testing due to the extreme weather conditions across the UK. According to the council the closure will “allow for improvements to be made”. This temporary testing centre is on of a few around the city. This one in particular is one of two that provide a walk-in service as opposed to the general drive-in testing centres that are frequently seen.
The site is part of the city council’s plans to increase the city’s testing capacity, in neighbourhoods in particular. It opened on the 21st June, and was set to be open for at least 5 days.
Booking an appointment is required and people are being asked to make one of these appointments for their test by registering online at gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested. Appointments will be available between 10.30am and 4pm.
Tests will be available to local people who are concerned they have symptoms or think they may have come into close contact with someone with Coronavirus.
Leicester City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said: “I am pleased the Government has agreed to set up this facility which will enable people living in the area to get tested quickly and easily.
“At the moment we have information on only a tiny fraction of Leicester’s population – about 1% – that has been tested. We have also been reliant on people self-diagnosing and being able to travel to a testing station. This new site will enable us to start to build a proper picture of what is happening.”
The unit is accessible from the St Saviours Road entrance to the park, near to the bowls area.
People attending the site are asked to wear a face covering and ensure they stay two metres away from others.
On arrival people will be met by specially trained, testing centre personnel. They will be taken through the self-swabbing process, and told how to obtain their results, which should be available within 48 hours.
“This is a welcome first-step to increasing testing capacity in Leicester, and it is my intention that there will be more initiatives like this in other parts of the city in coming weeks” the City Mayor added.
The site at Spinney Hills is in addition to test centres at: Evington Leisure Centre (mobile unit – drive through), Victoria Park (mobile unit – drive through), and Birstall Park and Ride (permanent site – drive through). These other testing centres should all be available until at least Monday 29 June.
People in Leicester who think they have symptoms can book online for a test at gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested. When they book, an appointment will be made for them at their closest testing site.
By Sam Ellison