Worcester Cathedral COVID Test Centre

04th February 2021

Worcester Cathedral is the latest cathedral to help serve its community in the fight against the pandemic and rising transmission rates by being able to offering free rapid lateral flow tests.

The Cathedral is working in partnership with the Department of Health and Social Care and Worcestershire County Council to offer rapid lateral flow tests to people with no symptoms in a bid to drive down transmission rates.

The Dean of Worcester, The Very Revd Peter Atkinson said:

“After taking the difficult decision to suspend public worship at Worcester Cathedral to help contain the spread of Covid-19, I am proud that we are now able to further support the City’s efforts to drive down transmission rates by offering the Cathedral for the community testing initiative.

“Thanks to the support of Worcestershire County Council, we have been able to do this while also continuing to open for socially-distanced private prayer from 11am to 1pm, Monday to Saturday.

“We continue to pray for the community daily by means of our online services and this is a proactive way of putting our prayers into action,” he added.

Worcester Cathedral is the fifth Church of England Cathedral able to support its local community in the national effort to minimise the spread of the coronavirus and help with the rollout of the vaccine programme.

Lichfield and Salisbury Cathedrals have both been used a vaccine clinics, the undercroft and crypt area of Blackburn Cathedral has now been transformed into one of the nation’s mass vaccination hubs and Rochester’s crypt has been offering testing for asymptomatic patients since December.

Worcester Cathedral’s Chief Operating Officer, Val Floy, said:

“Worcester Cathedral has been serving the community for fourteen centuries, and we are delighted to offer our building to support the local community testing initiative at the start of 2021.

“We have worked closely with Worcestershire County Council and DHSC to provide all they need to operate the initiative under strict social-distancing and public health regulations, as well as ensuring that members of the public can continue socially-distanced private prayer in a separate part of the building.”

Dr Kathryn Cobain, Director for Public Health in Worcestershire said:

“The Cathedral is such an iconic building, I am delighted it is going to be used as a Rapid Flow Testing centre. This will add to our efforts to reduce the spread of the virus and will mean even more choice of venues for those wanting to get a rapid test in the city.”

Councillor John Smith, cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing added:

“I couldn’t think of a more appropriate building to join us in tackling Coronavirus. The Cathedral has been a central part of the community for over fourteen centuries, and it is great to see it taking a role, as part of the response to the pandemic.”

Around one in three people who are infected with Covid-19 have no symptoms so widening testing to identify people without symptoms means finding positive cases more quickly and breaking the chains of transmission. Rapid-turnaround lateral flow tests are a new type of technology, which provide results within an hour and do not require a laboratory to process the test.

Appointments are available for all those aged 18 and over and must be pre-booked using this online booking link.