More than 600 jobs to go at Leamington Covid ‘mega lab’

More than 600 jobs are set to go at the first Covid-19 testing “mega lab” to be set up in the UK.

The Rosalind Franklin Laboratory opened in June 2021 in Leamington Spa and was the largest of its kind in the country.

Up to 8.5 million tests were processed there, but now it is being scaled down, the UK Health and Security Agency said.

The UKHSA said that freeing the facility of PCR testing will now mean the facility can be used for other purposes.

It said options for how the facility will be used in the future are being considered and details will be made available in due course.

Oliver Munn, COO for COVID-19 testing at UKHSA, said: “I am very grateful to the staff at the Rosalind Franklin Laboratory whose skill and dedication have contributed to saving lives and helping the nation recover from the pandemic.

“The lab was built and became operational at record pace, with the first test samples being processed on 25 June 2021, just 6 months after building work began. Critically, it was able to contribute to testing during the winter of 2021 when the Omicron variant was at its peak.

“The lab has processed over 8.5 million samples since its opening and has played a huge role in protecting the nation. UKHSA and its contractors will be working with affected staff to support them through the change.”

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