New Local Testing Site opens at Woodgreen Leisure Centre

A new walk-through coronavirus testing facility has opened for those with symptoms to book appointments at Woodgreen Leisure Centre in Banbury.

Published: Wednesday, 18th November 2020

A new walk-through coronavirus testing facility has opened for those with symptoms to book appointments at Woodgreen Leisure Centre in Banbury.

It is part of the government’s UK-wide drive to continue to improve the accessibility of coronavirus testing for local communities. Staff from Cherwell District Council’s facilities management team have been working with government representatives to put the practical arrangements in place. They have also relied on the support of the council’s leisure centre operator (Parkwood/Legacy Leisure) and the understanding of the clubs which ordinarily use the centre.

Councillor Lynn Pratt, Cherwell’s Lead Member for Economy, Regeneration and Property, said: “With cases in Banbury and the wider district rising, this new Local Testing Centre is very welcome. For those with coronavirus symptoms, it will make testing more accessible, helping identify cases and suppress local transmission. I am proud that Cherwell District Council staff have been able to support the government to make the centre a reality.”

Testing is only available for those with coronavirus symptoms – a high temperature, a new continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste. Anyone with one or more of these symptoms should book a test at or by calling 119. The government is committed to continue expanding the capacity of the network of UK test sites and laboratories to make it even easier to get tested and reduce the time it takes to receive test results.

The new site is situated so that it is easily accessible without a car. Those being tested will be required to follow public health measures, including social distancing, not travelling by taxi or public transport, practising good personal hygiene and wearing a face covering throughout, including while travelling to and from the testing centre.

Anyone attending an appointment at a walk-through test site will be provided with guidance on getting to and from the test site safely, with additional support for vulnerable groups and people with disabilities.

Testing at the new site started on Wednesday November 18, with appointments made available each day.

The site is part of the largest network of diagnostic testing facilities created in British history which has the capacity to process more than 500,000 tests a day and includes more than 600 sites across the UK.

Anyone testing positive for the virus in England will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace to help them trace their contacts. This will help to identify who they may have been in close contact with, protecting others from further transmission.

Close contacts of those testing positive will also hear from NHS Test and Trace, asking them to stay at home for 14 days to prevent them from unknowingly spreading the virus. They will be advised to also book a test if they develop symptoms.

Health Minister Lord Bethell said: “To respond to the coronavirus, we have built a major testing and tracing system from scratch. We are constantly working to expand and improve it with new technologies and innovations so everyone with symptoms can get a test.

“New walk-in sites like this one makes it even easier to get a test no matter where you live. If you have symptoms of coronavirus, I urge you to book a test today and follow the advice of NHS Test and Trace if you are contacted to protect others and stop the spread of the virus.”