Lancashire's temporary morgue to close due to it 'not being required'

A temporary morgue built in Lancashire to ensure the county could cope with any spike in deaths as a result of the coronavirus outbreak is to be decommissioned.

Monday, 17th August 2020, 8:17 pm

The facility was built at the BAE Systems plant at Warton in Fylde back in April, with the capacity to store 1,000 people – but it has now been "decommissioned."

The temporary morgue was built to make sure the county could respond to the emergency while "ensuring the deceased continued to be treated with dignity and respect before they were laid to rest."

Work has since continued to expand the current NHS provision to ensure there is more permanent capacity to cope with demand in the future.

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Visual representation of how a temporary morgue might look - but this is not an image of the facility at Warton. (Credit: Lancashire County Council)

As a result, it has now been revealed the facility has not actually been used since it opened April 20.

However, the county's residents are being warned that the welcome news is not a cause for complacency, as Lancashire remains focused on lowering its infection rate.

County Councillor Geoff Driver CBE, leader of Lancashire County Council, said: "I am truly thankful that it never had to be used despite the sad increase in bereavements in Lancashire because of this awful virus.

"The Lancashire Resilience Forum is now confident that there is sufficient capacity in the current system if there was to be an increase in cases.

"But I would really urge people to continue to follow all the measures to ensure this does not happen and the virus does not spread.

"I am very grateful to all the mortuaries and funeral directors who the Lancashire Resilience Forum are working with, and to BAE for providing this site when we needed to ensure we had all contingencies covered."

BAE Systems offered use of their land and utilities free of charge in order to host the temporary mortuary.

The project was led by the Lancashire Resilience Forum, a group of organisations involving the emergency services, local councils, health agencies, and private and voluntary sectors, who work together to prepare and respond to emergencies in the county.

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