Concerns raised that Covid passport requirements could lead to queues outside Northumberland nightclubs

Covid-19 testing.Covid-19 testing.
Covid-19 testing.
Plan B Covid rules have prompted fears of queues of partygoers queuing to complete their lateral flow tests so they can visit nightclubs this Christmas.

Covid passports will be required from December 15 in an attempt to slow the spread of the Omicron variant.

But it has raised questions over how the new rules will be managed and policed in Northumberland.

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“For those who haven’t had a vaccine for whatever reason, but who might wish to attend a nightclub or similar venue, you will need a negative test before going in,” said Barry Flux, chairman of Northumberland County Council’s Health and Wellbeing Board.

“When would that happen, would that happen a day before, or would there be a queue down the main street in Alnwick outside the nightclub with people doing that?

“I also have slight concerns about people, after a few drinks, being told they can’t go in a venue because they’re not boosted, or if their phone has stopped working or some other thing.”

Under the new measures, people in England will now need to prove they have either had two Covid-19 vaccinations or have recently tested negative for the virus before they will be granted access to certain venues and events.

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Covid passports can already be obtained through the official NHS app, although tech errors had been reported on the service within hours of the Prime Ministers Plan B announcement.

Responding to Cllr Flux’s concerns at the latest meeting of the Health and Wellbeing Board, director of public health Liz Morgan said her department was still waiting on government guidance on how the new rules will be managed.