Getting a COVID-19 test


  • I have symptoms of COVID-19 and I need a test
  • I've had a positive lateral flow test at home and I need to confirm the result 
  • I don't have symptoms but I would like to get regular rapid testing (lateral flow testing) for myself or my household

For information on the national vaccination programme, please click here.

Testing for people with symptoms

If you have at least one of the three main COVID-19 symptoms you must self-isolate immediately and get a PCR test. The key symptoms to look out for are:

  • A high temperature;
  • A new, continuous cough; and
  • You've lost your sense of smell or taste or it has changed.

The easiest way to get a PCR test is by accessing the national system: Get a free NHS test to check if you have coronavirus - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

You can also use this service if:

  • You've been asked to get a test by a local council;
  • You've had a positive lateral flow test result at home and need to confirm results;
  • You've received an unclear result and were told to get a second test;
  • You need to get a test for someone you live with who has symptoms

PCR Testing is available in the Wakefield District at the following locations:

  • Former Westgate Station Car Park (WF1 1XP)
  • The former Castleford Swimming Baths (WF10 5DX).
  • Mobile testing units at different sites in the District

Test sites are open 7 days a week. The two sites in Wakefield are 'walk up' sites, so you can walk, cycle or drive to them and walk through the site for your test.

The mobile testing units may be either 'drive through' or 'walk through'. If you need a car to visit a site you will be asked before booking an appointment. 

If you drive to the sites then please park considerately. There are 5 parking spaces on site for people visiting the Castleford Baths so please use these first.

If you prefer to order a home delivery test kit you can do this through the same national website. The kit will then need to be returned by post.

You can also visit test sites in other local authorities. The national website will advise you on the nearest site with convenient appointments.

If you have symptoms and struggle to access a test through the national system, you can contact our local service Conexus. More information is here.

Regular lateral flow testing for people without symptoms

Twice weekly rapid tests (lateral flow tests) are now available for everyone over 18 who doesn't have symptoms.

Rapid or lateral flow tests can be done on the spot and a result is available within 30 minutes.

Most people prefer to test themselves at home, but we do have some sites which offer 'assisted' testing. This is where you swab yourself but a staff member processes the test for you.

By asking people with no symptoms to test regularly, we can identify people who are infectious before they can spread the virus to their friends, family, colleagues or fellow students. 

Although lateral flow testing is quick and convenient, it is less reliable than the PCR tests for people with symptoms. It is not a substitute. 

How to access twice-weekly rapid testing

We want to make it as easy as possible for everyone in Wakefield to access testing, and take up the offer of twice-weekly rapid testing. The following routes are available, depending on individual situations:

  • Workplace testing: Thousands of employers are offering testing in the workplace. This includes testing sites, where you can take a supervised test, and workplace collect, where you can pick up a box of tests to use at home. If your employer offers workplace testing, this is still the best route for you to access rapid tests.
  • Community testing:

We currently have community test sites which offer collection of home test kits. You can also make an appointment for an assisted test.

All Wakefield District libraries are offering collection of home test kits during their usual opening hours.

  • Wakefield Market Hall (open 8.40am to 7pm, 7 days a week)
  • Holywell Lane Day Centre, Castleford (open 8.40am – 7pm, 7 days a week)
  • Kinsley and Fitzwilliam Community Centre (open Tues, Thurs and Sat mornings and Weds and Friday afternoon and evening)

Click here to view and book available appointments and collection slots.

For the most up-to-date information on site locations and opening hours please click here: Find where to get rapid lateral flow tests - NHS (test-and-trace.nhs.uk)

  • NHS Test and Trace sites: These operate as symptomatic (PCR) testing sites in the morning but are currently providing a collect option from 3pm, where you can pick up a box of tests to use at home.
  • Find where to get rapid lateral flow tests - NHS (test-and-trace.nhs.uk)
  • Pharmacy collect: You can visit any participating pharmacy to collect a box of test kits to use at home. To find a pharmacy near to you, please click here:
  • Find where to get rapid lateral flow tests - NHS (test-and-trace.nhs.uk)
  • Education: Secondary and college students are already being given tests to use at home twice a week, throughout term time and the holidays. Some Wakefield schools are also piloting 'school collect' where families can collect kits from school. Please ask your headteacher whether your school is taking part.
  • LFD Direct: For people who can't access tests through the other routes, you can order a box of tests online or through 119, which will be delivered to your home.

To order tests online, please click here:

Order coronavirus (COVID-19) rapid lateral flow tests - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)