Lincoln
September 17, 2020 3.52 pm

Deserted COVID-19 testing centre as test shortage continues

But the site is advertising jobs

Lincolnshire Showground was almost deserted on Thursday as nation-wide testing shortages and delays continue.

The government is prioritising testing for places with higher infection rates, which means many areas, including Lincolnshire, are seeing shortages of testing capacity and problems booking online.

People have been struggling to book tests at their local centre and have been told to keep trying, or face long trips to Leicester, Oldham or further afield.

Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Health bosses have said they expect issues to last at least two more weeks. Those without symptoms or with the wrong symptoms have been asked not to book tests “just-in-case” or as pre-holiday precautions.

They have also told people not to turn up without an appointment to get tests, something which people were successfully doing before, but not now that rules have been tightened.

Meanwhile, the Lincolnshire Showground testing shows few signs of activity.

Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Attempts by local reporters to access tests locally have yielded unsuccessful results all week.

Then a visit by a photographer who observed the Showground on Thursday morning saw only a couple of cars attend,  with staff enjoying the sun for the rest of the time..

However, it does appear the testing centre is looking for new staff.

Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

A post on Facebook by Nicky Dring read: “Urgently requiring staff for Lincolnshire Showground, COVID-19 test site.

“If you are interested in working immediately, please email [email protected]

The recruitment agency listed a weekly pay of £10 an hour for a “reliable” 35 hours a week work.

A reporter spoke to a Nottingham Blue Arrow representative who said they were backfilling some of the 150 employees at the showground for Serco.

They said that due to furlough now ending, people were returning to their old jobs.

The job advertised was for a car park attendant.

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