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Powys Teaching Health Board and the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society working together to deliver COVID vaccination

Wednesday this week saw the opening of the new Mass Vaccination Centre at the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd, Builth Wells. In its first few days of operation it will see almost 1,000 Powys residents aged 80 and over receive their first dose of the COVID vaccine.

Husband and wife Alec and Elizabeth Tompkins both received their vaccines at the centre and expressed how glad they were to have had it and how they hoped that it would help bring things back to normal soon.

The showground at Llanelwedd provides a great central location in Powys for the vaccination centre and has excellent facilities available to make the vaccination process as easy as possible.

As well as the fantastic support from the showground staff in getting set up, health board staff are supported by an army of volunteers as well as by members of the Royal Air Force to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

Carol Shillabeer, Chief Executive of Powys Teaching Health Board said “This really goes to show the benefits of partnership working in Powys. We have been working together with the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society on testing and now we are doing COVID vaccinations. I would like to thank Steve and his whole team for the help and support they have given us over the past year.”

Steve Hughson, Chief Executive of the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society explained that “There have been huge difficulties right across the events sector since COVID struck.  We were not able to hold our regular events at the showground last year and there remain huge challenges still ahead. Despite these challenges, the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society is proud to be able to work with Powys Teaching Health Board and to support the work they are doing to combat the virus.

We have hosted a COVID testing facility here on the showground for a number of months now and I am really proud to see the Mass Vaccination Centre opening here on the showground. We are delighted to have been able to play our part in helping the wider community in Powys at this time and we will continue to support in any way we can to help get back to normal and welcome people back to the showground for future agricultural events.”

The health board expects to have written to every person over the age of 80 with an invitation for vaccination by the end of next week.

We would like to remind people that they must not attend a vaccination centre unless they have an appointment booked. GPs will also soon be contacting people directly to offer vaccination to other priority groups. Again, we ask that people do not call their GP for an appointment at this time.