A CUMBRIAN council has posted on social media that moves are afoot for a 'walk -in' covid-19 testing site in Penrith following the closure of the town's drive-through centre.

The site, at Penrith Rugby Club, Winters Park, closed in August because it is understood that it was adversely impacting the club's finances.

It had been opened earlier this year as part of the Government's scramble to curb the coronavirus outbreak in he area.

It's replacement, at Carlisle Airport, is more than 29 miles away.

This now means that the closest non mobile testing centre for people in the town is nearly 21 miles away in Carlisle's Castle Car Park, next to Devonshire Walk.

However Eden District Council revealed, in a Facebook post on Sunday, that talks were in progress for a walk-in testing centre, which could be accessed by non-driving residents of the town.

Additionally, according to the North Cumbria NHS Clinical Commissioning Group's website, a mobile testing centre will be at the town's rugby club today, Wednesday, and then on September 23 and 30.

A mobile centre will further be in Keswick, the Old Pencil Factory site, today, tomorrow, and then on September 23, 24 and 30.

Another will also be in Kirby Stephen, at the Upper Eden Rugby Union FC Westgarth Road, on Thursday, Friday and September 25.

The tests will be available from 9.30am to 3.30pm but must be booked in advance.

Test centres are run by the Department for Health and Social Care.

A spokesman said: “NHS Test and Trace is working, our capacity is the highest it has ever been and but we are seeing a significant demand for tests.

"New booking slots and home testing kits are made available daily for people with symptoms and we are targeting testing capacity at the areas that need it most, including those where there is an outbreak, and prioritising at-risk groups.

“Our laboratories are processing more than a million tests a week and we recently announced new facilities and technology to process results even faster.

"If you do not have symptoms and are not eligible to get a test you can continue to protect yourself if you wash your hands, wear a face covering and follow social distancing rules.”

He also said a small number of sites are being relocated across the country, something that was dictated by demand, and the walk-through testing centre could be set up in Penrith at some point in October.

Anyone with symptoms of covid-19 can get information on testing at the following website address: northcumbriaccg.nhs.uk/covidtesting.

Alternatively call 119 if you have problems using the internet - telephone lines are open between 7am and 11pm every day.