A NEW coronavirus test centre is set to be created in Winchester to met demand for testing in the city.

Hampshire Chronicle can reveal that talks are underway to bring a walk-through centre to the city, but civic chiefs are keeping tight-lipped over the exact location.

It comes as people wanting to be tested are being forced to travel miles from their home to get a test due to increasing demand.

A search on the Government's testing portal for the postcode of the Chronicle’s office in Upper Brook Street on Thursday afternoon revealed that there were no drive-through or walk-through appointments at any centres. The only option which was given was a home test.

Simon Bryant, director of Public Health at Hampshire County Council, said: “In addition to our regional testing centre at Southampton Airport, Hampshire residents may also be given appointments at other sites including temporary locations to which mobile testing units are deployed. Given the increase in demand for testing, we are actively looking at options for additional walk-through sites across Hampshire, including in Winchester as we recognise the growing demand for testing in the city from both local residents, as well as the large student population.

“We would like to remind everyone that all testing sites are accessible by appointment only and can be booked online at www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or by calling 119.”

Despite citing demand from the city's large student population, the Chronicle has been told that Winchester University has recorded no cases of Covid-19 since students returned.