A new temporary coronavirus test site which can be accessed by car is to open at Himley tomorrow.
The drive-through site will operate for the duration of lockdown and all tests must be booked in advance.
Himley will be closed from 6pm today (Wednesday) and it is hoped it will re-open to the public on Monday November 16. During this time, while the site is establishing, members of the public who are not going to a test appointment are asked not to visit the park.
The site is the third testing site to open in Dudley borough and this location chosen to improve access to testing on this side of the borough and due to the high rate of infection we are currently seeing in Dudley.
The other sites, which are walk-through test centres are on Flood Street car park (off Oakeywell Street) in Dudley and on Jackson Street car park in Lye. There is also a drive through mobile test site at Brierley Hill.
All those attending an appointment will be provided with guidance on getting to and from the test site safely, with additional support for vulnerable groups and people with disabilities.
The Himley site will be open seven days a week and appointments must be made in advance by calling 119 or visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.
Councillor Nicolas Barlow, cabinet member for health and adult social care said:
"This further test site in the borough will make it easier for residents to access testing.
"We regret that the park will be closed to visitors for a short period of time but our current priority is to get on top of this virus which is impacting on all of our lives.
"The park will therefore close from this evening and we must ask members of the public who have not got a test appointment booked to stay away from the park until it re-opens. We are hoping to re-open on Monday November 16.
"It’s really important if you have coronavirus symptoms to contact the NHS Test and Trace service as soon as possible to book an appointment in advance by calling 119 or visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus."
Testing is vital to stop the spread of coronavirus in local communities. Anyone testing positive for the virus in England will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace to help them track their contacts. This will help people 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.
All people attending the centres must wear a face covering, with the exception of children under three years old, who must observe social distancing on site. Children over three will only be admitted if they are wearing a face covering. If they cannot wear a face mask for medical reasons, then they should request a home test.
The testing centre is being operated in partnership with Serco and will offer self-administered tests.