Lydd Airport opens as new vaccination centre amid concerns about speed and efficiency in county

Questions are being raised about the efficiency of the coronavirus vaccination programme in Kent after reports of towns yet to inoculate their first residents. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Questions are being raised about the speed and efficiency of the coronavirus vaccination programme in Kent, and parts of Sussex, after more reports of towns and villages yet to inoculate their first residents.

It comes as a new vaccination centre opened at Lydd Airport but there are calls for more GPs to offer the jabs at surgeries and community centres.

  • Report by ITV News Meridian's Kit Bradshaw:

It's patients not passengers heading into the terminal building at Lydd Airport as it's repurposed as a vaccination centre.

Our cameras weren't allowed inside, but the relief was clear from those who'd just got their jab. 

One of the reasons for the long wait for over 80s in this part of Kent is a lack of GPs administering the vaccine and not everyone is happy about a remote airfield being used at all.

Questions are being raised about the speed and efficiency of the coronavirus vaccination programme in Kent Credit: ITV News Meridian

Tony Cooper runs a support group for those with lung problems. 


Down the road in Greatstone, John and Grace, who are both in their 80s, have a slot for tomorrow but are disappointed that it's taken so long.

Grace Thacher, Gratestone resident, 82 years old:

Meanwhile in nearby St Mary's Bay, Mick Rayner who's in his 70s is worried he won't be able to get to the airport site, if he's invited. 

Mick Rayner, St Mary's Bay- resident

The local MP says there are reasons why local doctor's surgeries haven't been able to offer the shot. 

Damian Collins MP, Folkestone and Hythe, Con

Kent and Medway Clinical Commissioning Group says it's continuing to increase the number of vaccination services and working hard to ensure all Kent residents are vaccinated as swiftly as possible.

Wilf Williams, Accountable Officer for Kent and Medway CCG said, "As part of the largest vaccination programme in the history of the NHS, we continue to increase the number of vaccination services across Kent and Medway with 38 GP services already vaccinating and more opening this week and next."