Covid-19 Updates

Useful links:        

Important Information to keep you safe while isolating at home if you have coronavirus
Information for Diabetics
Information regarding coronavirus and pregnancy

Latest Government Information

Face Mask Government Exemption Cards
Face Mask Transport Exemption Cards

Statutory Sick Pay form 

Help in the community: Pulling Together Ludlow             


If there is any further news/information relating specifically to coronavirus, we will add it below.  Please keep an eye on our website news section  - and also on our Facebook page - for further news and information.

For information about coronavirus tests, please visit or call 119. 

Vaccinations: Remember that the vaccination is available free of charge and that the NHS will never ask for bank details to confirm your identity. Book your vaccination via or call 119. Some clinics may be available at the surgery here, so give us a call and we can advise you.

April 2022

Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Covid-19 test sites will be closing in line with the Government’s ‘Living with Covid’ plan from the start of April. 

This means that free testing at the walk-through PCR sites for people with Covid symptoms at all sites across the county (including Oswestry and Shrewsbury’s sites, mobile testing units in Ludlow and Market Drayton, as well as The Place Oakengates, Legges Way Madeley, Wrekin Car Park Wellington and the testing site at Ironbridge Park and Ride) will close from Friday 1 April. 

Free Covid tests will still be available for people at risk of serious illness from Covid-19 (the over-75s and over-12s with weakened immune systems), and those eligible for Covid-19 treatments, along with NHS staff and social care workers, it has been announced. People not in these groups will have to buy a lateral flow test from pharmacies, supermarkets or online. 

The new rules say that from 1 April in England, free testing will be provided for:

  • Patients in hospital, where a PCR test is required for their care
  • People who are eligible for community Covid drug treatments because they are at higher risk of getting seriously ill if they become infected. People in this group will be contacted directly and sent lateral flow tests to keep at home for use if they have symptoms, as well as being told how to reorder tests
  • Care home residents
  • People working in some high-risk settings, including care homes and prisons. These staff will be able to test regularly, without symptoms

Asymptomatic lateral flow testing will continue from April in some high-risk settings where infection can spread rapidly while prevalence of Covid-19 is high. 

The Government has said it still has the ability to ramp up testing should it be needed, such as if a new variant of concern emerges.

From 1 April, updated guidance will advise people with symptoms of a respiratory infection, including Covid-19, and a high temperature or who feel unwell, to try stay at home and avoid contact with other people, until they feel well enough to resume normal activities and they no longer have a high temperature. Anyone with a positive Covid-19 test result will be advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for five days, which is when they are most infectious.

Rachel Robinson, Shropshire Council’s Director of Public Health, said: “As we move through the changes set out within the Living with Covid-19 plan, it remains crucial that we do all we can to protect our communities, particularly those who are most vulnerable. “Following safe behaviours has been one of the key tools we’ve had to help reduce the spread of the virus and keep everyone in our communities safe and will be a massive part in how we live with Covid-19 safely going forward.  I strongly urge everyone locally to continue getting vaccinated, wearing a face covering in areas that are busier and indoors, welcoming fresh air into their meet-ups and washing their hands regularly. By working together, we can manage these next steps safely.”

Liz Noakes, Telford and Wrekin's Director for Public Health, added: “It is important for people to remember that Covid-19 has not gone away even if the free testing comes to an end. Everything we do – all the small things we have learned to keep ourselves safe – become even more important now, especially self-isolating if you have symptoms or a positive test result, to avoid spreading the virus to someone more vulnerable to it. If we continue to work together, we can keep each other safe and well.”

Further information and updates on Covid testing, including how those at high risk from Covid will be able to get free NHS tests, can be found on the Government website:

Further information on booster vaccines can be found on the NHS website:


March 2022

As you may have seen & heard on the TV & Radio, the Government/JCVI has announced a spring booster campaign for particular cohorts of patients. These cohorts are
- People aged 75 years and over
- Care home Residents
- People aged 12 years and over with a weakened immune system
The Government / JCVI states that you should be offered an appointment around 6 months since your last dose of vaccine. For the majority of our patients in these cohorts, it has not yet been 6 months since the last dose of vaccine and therefore the clinics will not begin until May 2022. Please DO NOT contact the surgery regarding vaccination, patients will be invited as they become eligible.

January 2022

If you still need your first, second or booster Covid Vaccination, we are running clinics and drop-in clinics so please call us and we will be able to let you know the options.
If you have any other concerns relating to Covid, please contact us. 
For parents of children aged 5-11, you can read the vaccination guide here: Guide for Parents of children aged 5-11 years


Tuesday 30th November 2021

We are very pleased to have opted-in to further local Covid-19 vaccination programmes. Please read on for the details of these:

Dear Patients,
There is a vaccine for you, closer to home, but please help us to help you and wait to be contacted by your surgery.
South West Shropshire Primary Care Network continues to deliver the Covid-19 vaccination programme.

We are a network of six practices (Bishop’s Castle, Church Stretton, Clun, Craven Arms and Portcullis/Station Drive surgeries in Ludlow) and we have three sites delivering the booster dose this winter – Church Stretton Medical Practice, Portcullis Surgery (via the Mascall Centre) and Station Drive Surgery (via Ludlow Community Hospital).

Station Drive Surgery also runs an Evergreen vaccination clinic every Tuesday evening but this is not a booster clinic. This is a walk-in clinic (please arrive between 17.30 and 18.30) for anyone who needs a first or second vaccine or a third primary dose (because they are immunosuppressed).

SW Shropshire PCN has opted into delivering the booster vaccine to those aged over 40 (Cohort 10) and like you, we have just heard the announcement of a further extension of the vaccination programme to a booster for anyone aged over 18; a shortening of the interval between second vaccine dose and booster to 91 days; and a fourth primary vaccine to those who are immunosuppressed.

This latest phase of the programme will not start for at least two weeks. We really need your continued support and understanding while we work through what we are doing as a group of practices. The key way you can help us is not to contact your surgery about the latest vaccination programme developments as we await further information and guidance. We shall release further information shortly on what we shall be doing next.

This will also allow us to continue with our day-to-day work in primary care and free up the phone lines for those who have an urgent need to contact their surgery.

In the meantime our vaccination programme continues to prioritise those who are most vulnerable to Covid-19 and its complications ie those who are clinically extremely vulnerable, our older patients, the housebound, those in care homes or who are immunosuppressed as well as health and social care staff and those who have not yet stepped forward to have either their first or second vaccine. This approach is based on recommendations from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). Your practice will contact you and offer you a booster as we work through those priority groups.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank our wonderful practices and staff for their dedication and commitment to the people of SW Shropshire and the way they have pulled together to deliver the vaccination programme on top of their primary care work.

Dr Finola Lynch
Clinical director, SW Shropshire PCN

We will invite you to book your covid booster by sending you a link in a text message. We’ll ring people who do not have a mobile number registered with us. If you would like to check we have your most up-to-date number, or would like to add a new mobile number to your records, we would ask that you please do NOT ring us. You can let us know via the website or by emailing

Monday 20th September 2021

If you have children aged 12-16 and have queries about the covid vaccination for this age group, please have a look at where you will find leaflets including:

- Covid-19 vaccination: a guide for eligible children and young people aged 12 to 17 years
- Covid-19 vaccination: a guide for eligible children and young people aged 16 to 17 years
- Information for children and young people on what to expect after their Covid-19 vaccination
- Covid-19 vaccination for at-risk children and young people aged 12 to 15 years (simple text)

This year school immunisation teams will be providing Flu and Covid vaccines to children aged 12 to 15. Parents will be  asked to give permission for their child to be immunised as part of the consent process. It is important to remember:
·        You will need to make a decision on consent separately for the Flu and Covid vaccines. You can give permission for your child to have both vaccines, only Flu vaccine, only Covid vaccine or neither vaccine.
·        Please return your consent form even if you are declining vaccines otherwise we may need to contact you as we do not know your decision
·        If you have any questions then we can help you decide
·        If you change your mind please let us know straight away

Here are 5 reasons to have the flu vaccine :
1. Protect yourself - The vaccine will help protect you against flu and serious complications such as bronchitis and pneumonia
2. Protect your family and friends - Having the vaccine will help protect more vulnerable friends and family
3. No injection needed - The nasal spray is painless and easy to have
4. It’s better than having flu - The nasal spray helps protect against flu, has been given to millions worldwide and has an excellent safety record
5. Avoid lost opportunities - If your child gets flu, they may be unwell for several days and not be able to go to school or do the things they enjoy


Monday 19th July 2021

We have been given an update on the latest Government guidance for the clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV), particularly immunosuppressed patients, which you can read here: CEV updated advice 


FREE TRANSPORT TO VACCINATION APPOINTMENTS  -  If you or someone you know is worried about getting to their vaccination appointment, Shropshire Council can help. Residents who are without access to transport are now able to get FREE transport to their COVID-19 vaccination appointments. In order to get help, you must have had a letter inviting you for vaccination in Shropshire, and you must be unable to get there any other way. They will be able to provide transport to help you get to your appointment and back. All vehicles will have appropriate ventilation, with strict infection control measures in place to keep everyone safe. Transport can be booked by calling the COVID-19 Helpline on 0345 678 9028.

UNPAID CARERS: If you are an unpaid carer aged 16-64 and receive a carer's allowance, call 119 to book your vaccination. Otherwise, please call the COVID-19 Helpline on 0345 678 9011 during opening hours (Monday-Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 9am-1pm) - they will be support you to register as a carer and can then book you for a vaccination.


Monday 17th May

As a practice we are aware of the communication from NHSE and media regarding the opening up of GP receptions and appointments as of today, Monday 17th May.
At Station Drive Surgery, we have continued to see patients face to face throughout the pandemic, as well as offering a triage service. We continued to offer the majority of additional services during the pandemic.
We have recently increased our capacity for face-to-face appointments back to pre-covid capacity. Please be aware that you may need to wait outside if you attend an appointment, as we still have to socially distance indoors. We will review this as we move forward to ensure the safety of patients and staff safely as guidance changes.
We will continue to offer a mixture of remote consultations and face to face appointments to suit our patients needs.

Thursday 8th April

Key Information regarding the AstraZeneca (AZ) Vaccination:

1. The benefits of vaccination against Covid-19 still far outweigh the risks for the vast majority of patients and this is particularly apparent the older we get. But in younger age groups, i.e. those under 30, where the risks from complications from Covid are far less frequent, the risk of a very rare clotting complication appears to be more finely balanced.
2.We are continuing to vaccinate. All second doses of the AZ vaccine will continue as planned in cohorts 1-9 (those aged over 50 and those who are younger but with a condition that puts them at greater risk from the complications of Covid).
3. For patients aged over 30 who are healthy and have no additional risk factors, such as health & social care workers, household contacts for those who are immunosuppressed, the AZ vaccines will also continue.
4. However, if you are aged 29 or younger or you have additional risk factors (if you have previously suffered an unusual clot with a low platelet count from the AZ vaccine or you have a history of some other types of rare clotting disorders), we will offer you an alternative vaccine to AZ, for example Pfizer.
5. If you are under 30 and due to have your first vaccination now, you will need to have a conversation with a clinician at whatever site you are attending about your vaccine – you may need to consider an alternative vaccine and delay your vaccine protection briefly while an alternative appointment is organised for you.
6. If you are under 30 and/or have a potential contraindication to the AZ vaccine, and you have been booked into a vaccination clinic via the National Booking Service for Friday this week, you will be contacted and your clinic appointment cancelled. You will be advised to book a vaccine appointment via your GP or local vaccination service who will discuss the risks and benefits and support to you to identify the vaccine that is best for you.

To read the government statement regarding the AZ vaccine, please visit

Thursday 11th March

We are fully aware of the evidence from the studies relating to the effectiveness of the Covid vaccination in cancer patients. We are in discussion with the CCG and NHS England regarding this. There has been no change in the guidelines as yet, but if we receive news of any changes then we will get in touch with the individual patients affected to let them know what is happening. If you are still concerned and need to contact us, please email us at 

Friday 5th February

Dear Patients,
Update on where we are: "Heading into the end of week 2 - Mass Vaccination Programme".

"How many have you done?", "Where are you?", "What are your numbers?"... these are some of the questions that we are sure are in our patients minds. As we head into our second weekend of the mass vaccination programme, we can confirm that by Sunday midday (after our clinic on Sunday morning at Ludlow hospital) we will be in a position to move onto cohort 5, vaccinating patients below 69, from next week.

We aren't unique in meeting this achievement; and although our team has moved mountains to attain these figures (with all doctors, nurses and reception staff working at the surgery, the Church Stretton vaccination clinics, our clinics at Ludlow hospital, the Ludlow racecourse site alongside shifts across the county for other areas), all the Practices across the SW (Clun, Bishops Castle, Church Stretton, Craven Arms and Ludlow) have achieved this coverage alongside us. Our care homes are done, our home visits are being completed for the housebound patients and our surgery continues to offer routine appointments, emergency appointments, usual clinics and evening appointments.

Why no running totals? Well, although we think these are great and a way to celebrate what is being achieved, we are mindful that the pandemic has been a tragic time for many of our patients who have lost loved ones and sadly the vaccinations have come too late for some. So in respect of the patients and relatives we have lost to this virus we would prefer to continue doing things like we always have; in a quiet consistent, calm manner with minimal fuss - focusing on the task in hand only.

Will we get everyone vaccinated? Yes, absolutely. We will continue working alongside our neighbouring practices heading through the cohorts until every single patient who wishes to have a vaccination receives one. Sometime this will mean going back to patients in earlier cohorts because they were too unwell at the time of their first invitation to have the vaccination, or they have changed their minds.

Do you need to contact us for a vaccination? No. We have dedicated time from our senior receptionists to contact every patient registered with us when they are due their vaccine. Call us once you receive your letter or text and we will book you into a slot, at a time you can make and an accessible venue for you, we will also book your second vaccination on this call.

Who will give you your vaccine? Mostly we will - your doctors and nurses - but sometimes our colleagues might see you if you go to the racecourse or Church Stretton (just like we will see some of their patients).
So in summary, this is good news. As a group, we have raced through these vaccines and are on track now with our national targets.

Thank you for being patient, for staying at home, for supporting our staff and looking after each other
Best wishes,
Dr Graham Cook, Dr Caron Morton & Dr David Mitchell

Friday 29th January

We hope that the weather will not affect our weekend clinics. These vaccines are so precious and must not go to waste. However, please read the following information in case of problems.

If you are booked in for a Covid-19 vaccination on Saturday at Ludlow Hospital and cannot attend due to snow, please call us 07494 596245. This phone will be answered between 8.30am and 12.30pm on Saturday morning ONLY, and can be used to cancel Saturday appointments at Ludlow Hospital only. Please note that this mobile number is not for general use and will not be manned at any other time. If you can safely attend your appointment then please do so.

If you are booked in for a Covid-19 vaccination at Church Stretton and cannot attend due to snow, there is not currently a number to call. If you do not attend, please wait for us to contact you when we have further clinics set up. We do not know when this will be, so please do not call the surgery - we will call you. If you can safely attend your appointment then please do so.

Monday 25th January

Great news: Vaccine delivery dates for next week have been confirmed! The South West Shropshire Primary Care Network starts its vaccination programme against Covid-19 for eligible patients from Thursday, January 28th and we shall be vaccinating throughout the weekend of January 30th. We shall be working together as a group of practices, from the Health & Wellbeing Centre, in Church Stretton. The team will be made up of GPs, nurses, health care assistants and administrative staff from all our practices in Ludlow, Church Stretton, Craven Arms, Clun and Bishops Castle. We will still be running our usual range of services and appointments at the practice.

Our first cohort of patients will be the over 80s (cohort 2). The vaccine we shall be receiving first is the Pfizer vaccine. This cannot move from our ‘receiving site’ in Church Stretton and this is why you may be asked to attend an appointment there instead of at the practice. We will start contacting the over 80s from Monday, January 25th. We will be offering you a date and a time for your vaccine appointment. Please come to that appointment and get your vaccine. The sooner you are vaccinated, the sooner we can protect our community.

We understand that some of our patients are housebound or will have insurmountable difficulties getting to Church Stretton. There is a smaller amount of the Astra Zeneca vaccine available which is easier to transport and take out to practices and into people’s homes. There will be some vaccination appointments available at the practice but as the bulk of the vaccination delivery is Pfizer, the majority of the vaccination programme to start with, will take place at Church Stretton. As Pfizer stocks go down and Astra Zeneca supplies go up, we will be able to deliver more vaccine locally. However we need to vaccinate the over 80s as quickly as possible so that we can move onto the next cohort of patients vulnerable to complications from Covid-19.

Thank you again for your support and understanding and for following the guidelines to stay safe.

Please understand that we may need to cancel and re-book your vaccination appointment if there is a hold-up with the weekly delivery of vaccine or we don’t get as much as we expect. This is a national problem and out of our hands. If that is the case, we shall contact you and offer another appointment. You DO NOT need to contact us. Please do not worry, you will receive your vaccine.

Please note: A vaccination hub will also be opened at Ludlow Racecourse on February 1st as part of the national vaccination campaign. This will be centrally run and will operate alongside our vaccine clinics in practice. As a patient you will receive both an invitation from your practice to be vaccinated and a letter from NHS England to attend the racecourse. Patients are free to use either option. Your health records will reflect the same information stating you have received the vaccine. You do not need to contact your surgery. What’s important is that you get your vaccine as soon as possible to protect you and your community. When you get your first vaccine, you will be given an appointment for your second vaccine. Thank you.


Wednesday 20th January

The invitations for the Covid-19 vaccinations are being sent out according to our priority lists.
Please be assured that nobody will be missed!
There are vaccines for everyone and we will invite you at the earliest opportunity when it is your turn.

Tuesday 19th January

We would like to reassure you that the vaccine IS coming and we guarantee you WILL get it! 

All the GP surgeries in the South Shropshire Primary Care Network have the staff, the venues, and all the logistics in place... we are all ready to deliver it as soon as it is received. You will be contacted by your surgery when it is time for you to book your appointment. The message is, "Please do not phone us… we will contact you!"

To avoid long queues, appointment dates and times will be allocated to each patient. Due to the complexities of supply and delivery of the vaccines, which is out of our control, we may need to rearrange your appointment at short notice. But please be assured that we WILL vaccinate you as soon as we are able. 

Thursday 14th January

Fantastic news - We are able to start giving the Covid-19 vaccinations at the surgery and will be starting from Monday 25th January! We will be vaccinating at Ludlow Hospital and also here at the surgery, and will be rolling out the vaccines as quickly as we can. We have already vaccinated the staff & residents at many of our care homes, and are very keen to start on the next eligible cohort groups. We would politely ask you not ring the surgery to ask about the vaccinations. WE WILL CONTACT YOU. The staff are incredibly busy at the surgery organising the vaccination clinics alongside all our usual services, and we also need to keep the phone lines available for our medical queries. Please be reassured that we will roll out the vaccines as safely and speedily as we can.

If you work in a care home, nursing home or a domiciliary carer then please contact us via to let us know. Please include details of where you work so that this can be recorded in your medical record. This is so that we can offer you a covid vaccine as part of cohort 2.


Monday 11th January / Tuesday 12th January

  • A press release has been issued from the NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Service. Read it by clicking here.
  • Questions about the virus, the vaccines and vaccine delivery have been answered by Dr Caron Morton (Station Drive Surgery), Dr Catherine Beanland (Portcullis Surgery), and Rachel Robinson (Director of Public Health for Shropshire). The article is based on information available on 8th January 2021. Information on Covid-19 and the rollout of the vaccination programme is changing daily and we will try to keep you up to date as information changes. Please click here to read the full information: Covid Question & Answer Session
  • We are having enquiries from a growing number of people keen to volunteer and help with the vaccination programme in the area - thank you all. Shropshire RCC and Shropshire Youth Association (SYA) are working with the county's health and care organisations to lead a volunteer recruitment campaign to support local rapid testing and vaccination services. For information and to sign up, visit


Thursday 7th January

The NHS vaccination programme is underway in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin as part of the national rollout. NHS England will be contacting the people in the priority groups when it is their turn to receive the vaccine. People are being called forward who meet the criteria based on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s recommendations. 

Angie Wallace, the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme Director for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, has said: “We are working hard to ensure that that everyone who needs a vaccine is able to get one. We are now working through plans to deliver the vaccine by the middle of February to the four top priority groups. These include all residents in a care home for older adults and their carers, everyone over the age of 70, all frontline health and social care workers, and everyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable. We expect vaccine supply to increase, particularly now a further vaccine has been approved for use. This is good news, and will help enable us to increase the number of people we can vaccinate over the coming weeks, however, it will take time to roll the programme out across the county but be assured we are working hard to do this as quickly as is safely possible. I would urge the public to come forward when they are called up for the vaccine and to make sure they attend their appointments. Please do not contact your practice or the NHS for a vaccine; you will be contacted by the NHS when it is your turn.”


For more information about the COVID-19 vaccine please visit:


Tuesday 5th January 2021

Dear Patients,

We would just like to update you following the Prime Minister's announcement of a further National Lockdown from 6th January for a minimum of 6 weeks. 
The Practice remains open, Monday to Friday as usual. We will continue to see patients face-to-face as normal for routine and emergency appointments, as we always have done throughout the pandemic. We will continue to use the telephone triage system, meaning you will have a callback from a clinician first.
All screening appointments will continue:
- cervical screening
- postnatal appointments
- child immunisations
- review of long term conditions
We will continue to provide home visits for housebound patients who require medical treatment.

We would also like to remind patients that having the seasonal flu vaccination is more important than ever. Please contact the surgery as soon as possible if you have not yet had your flu vaccination and think you are eligible.

We were very proud to administer the first Covid-19 vaccinations to the residents of Hagley Place at the weekend. Hopefully these vaccinations will be rolled out to other cohorts of patients as quickly as possible by NHS England, and we will keep you updated.

Best wishes
Dr Graham Cook, Dr Caron Morton & Dr David Mitchell


Thursday 31st December

Dear Patients,

On behalf of the Partners, we would like to wish you all the best for the New Year.

As your doctors, we are aware of how hard the year has been for many of you. The impact of isolation, loss of jobs and sadly losing loved ones to coronavirus has left many of us with a great sadness as we move into the next year.

Nothing can undo what has happened in the past 12 months but we are hopeful that the news of the coronavirus vaccination programme starting in town on Saturday, with our first Care Home residents receiving their vaccines, may give a glimmer of hope for a return to normality in 2021.

Our plan will be to roll out the vaccine programme working with our neighbouring practices across the South West Shropshire Area over the coming weeks.

Alongside this, the surgery will continue to function as normal, with routine and emergency appointments available, chronic disease clinics, childhood immunisations and screening programmes, as well as counselling and other support services remaining available to you as usual.

We would like to thank our team of staff who have worked tirelessly in 2020 and supported us as doctors and you as patients.

Finally we would like to thank you for your ongoing support to the surgery and to wish you, your families and friends a much better year ahead.

Best wishes
Dr Graham Cook, Dr Caron Morton & Dr David Mitchell


Tuesday 22nd December

"Important information to keep you safe while isolating at home" - we have added the leaflet to our our Useful Links at the top of this page. Please have a read.


Thursday 17th December

We have been receiving lots of calls enquiring about the Covid vaccination programme. As of yet we do not have exact details of dates for the vaccinations to begin (this is unfortunately out of our control) but we sincerely hope it will be within the next few weeks. We will update you as soon as we have any further clarification.


Published: Dec 22, 2020