A new COVID-19 vaccination centre, one of the largest in the country, will open in Boston next week, and The Lincolnite went for a look inside.

The centre is based at the Princess Royal Sports Arena on Great Fen Road, and will be operational as of Monday, January 18.

It will be helping to deliver the national coronavirus vaccine rollout, offering vaccinations to vulnerable people in key priority groups.

A look inside Boston’s new COVID-19 vaccine site. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

The first patients to use the centre will live within 45 minutes of the site and are in the process of being contacted to book an appointment.

Strict coronavirus guidelines are, of course, in place at the centre, including the wearing of a face covering at all times.

It is among the largest in the country. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Social distancing has been set out by staff and volunteers at the centre, as well as a one-way system to avoid people crossing over.

The centre has been introduced as a response to the large volume of coronavirus cases in the Boston area, as well as two rapid mass testing sites which will open next week.

Staff will replenish PPE and help with any issues patients have. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Boston remains alongside Grantham and Lincoln as one of the Lincolnshire areas with the highest COVID transmission.

Lincolnshire health bosses weren’t made aware of the new site, adding to the frustrations they have aired over “nonsensical secrecy” from government and the NHS.

How the vaccination beds look. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Here are the steps and where to go when getting your COVID-19 vaccination at the new Boston site.

Step 1: You will be greeted at the entrance and encouraged to sanitise your hands, before being guided through a single-file door to the next stage.

You are directed through a single-file door towards the centre. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Step 2: Once you are through the door, you will follow the one-way system through a gazebo, heading towards the vaccination hub.

A long gazebo-style walkway leads you to the main entrance of the hub. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Step 3: At the end of the tented walkway is the entrance to the sports hall, which is where you will be given your vaccine.

You will arrive at the sports hall, where the vaccination takes place. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Step 4: This is like the reception area, where you will sign in and wait further instruction, waiting in socially distanced seats behind a rope. This is where you will fill in a consent form.

You will be asked to wait in socially distanced spaces behind a rope before making your way to the main area. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Step 5: This is where you will be taken to allow for vaccinations to occur at a safe two-metre distance away from everyone else.

You will then be shown to a seat to wait for your vaccination to take place. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Step 6: Staff will be on hand to assist with any queries or concerns you have before getting called to the tent for vaccination.

Sanitiser and social distancing among the many measures inside the centre.| Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Step 7: Once you have been vaccinated, you will be asked to leave the sports hall by following the designated exit signs.

Once the vaccination is done, you will be escorted away from the building safely. | Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Boston United completed the signing of 24-year-old striker Jake Wright on a free transfer.

Wright, who will wear the number 24 shirt for Boston, became a free agent after suffering a serious injury for the Pilgrims in last season’s promotion final against Altrincham.

Jake scored 10 goals in 29 appearances for Boston United and will now pick up where he left off with the club, starting with Saturday’s National League North game away to Alfreton Town.

Pilgrims boss Craig Elliott said he is delighted to sign Wright, who he describes as a “top striker at this level.”

“I am delighted to be able to sign Jake again, I think it’s clear to see that when Jake is fit and playing games, he is a top striker at this level.

“He has worked extremely hard to recover from a severe hamstring injury and get himself fit.

“Jake has had a lot of bad luck with injuries and I really hope he now has a bit of good luck and an injury-free season with us.”

Boston United currently sit inside the National League North play-off places, in sixth position, with promotion firmly in their sights.

Boston Borough Council will become a shareholder in a 10-year-old public services partnership company between East Lindsey and South Holland District Councils in a bid to save nearly £350,000.

All three authorities will hold meetings next week to agree to Boston receiving 240 shares (24%) in the 10-year-old company the Public Sector Partnership Services. The remaining split would be ELDC 48% and SHDC 28%.

The partnership already predicts it will save £502,000 over the next five years without Boston, but this increases to £849,000 with the authority – a difference of £347,000.

The PSPS was formed in 2010 as Compass Point Business Services and sees the two authorities share a number of services including human resources, revenue and benefits and health and safety.

In August 2020 bosses renewed the contract saying it had delivered £19 million of savings and a further £11 million would be achieved by 2030.

At the time, Councillor Graham Marsh, ELDC Deputy Leader said: “Over the past ten years they have done a fantastic job in supporting our council, especially at a time when we have needed to be ever aware of our finances.”

Councillor Tracey Carter, SHDC’s Portfolio Holder for Governance, said: “Modernisation and delivering cost efficiencies for residents is something all councils work hard to deliver, therefore I’m delighted with the savings and transformation we’ve delivered.”

Boston was due to be part of the PSPS when it was formed, but pulled out at the last minute.

However, in light of the recent strategic alliance with East Lindsey District Council, Boston looked to return to the table.

The alliance saw the two councils sharing Chief Executive Rob Barlow and other senior officers as part of a wider move to join workforces over the next few years.

Reports before the councils next week outline how Boston, as the joining company, would be required to make an unconfirmed financial investment towards the councils’ transformation plans and legal costs, as well as sign up to the terms the two authorities have already agreed.

Boston will be able to appoint two directors to the board, however, certain key shareholder decisions will be reserved to SHDC and ELDC as the founders.

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