Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Testing for those who can't work from home

Coronavirus (COVID-19) testing is available in Thurrock for anyone who lives in Thurrock and cannot work from home. Tests are provided by the NHS and are free.

If you have symptoms of coronavirus, go to testing for those with COVID-19 symptoms.

If you are working and still have to attend your workplace, or your work requires you to attend different workplaces, you should get a test even if you don't have symptoms of COVID-19. For now, you're only being asked to take a one-off test.

You can take a test even if you'd received a negative test result before the current national lockdown.

It's very important that all those still working at their workplace get tested as soon as possible to help stop the virus spreading further.

If you are a childminder whose home is an essential workplace where you come into contact with others, or if you are a voluntary carer making daily visits to a vulnerable person, you should get a test. If you are an employee of a local council and still attend your workplace, you should get a test. If you work at a school, you should first check whether the school is providing a test for you.

You should only get a test for yourself, not for others in your household unless they are employed and have to attend their workplace.

The testing programme for children and families has now ended.

How to get tested

You can either:

  • go to a drop-in test site
  • book a drive-through or walk-in test
  • ask to get a test by post
  • collect a testing kit from one of 3 libraries in Thurrock

You'll be given the type of test that is sent to a lab (called a 'PCR' test), not a rapid swab test (called a 'lateral flow' test). Most people get their results the next day, but it can take up to 3 days. For more information, go to NHS: your coronavirus test result.

Do not get a test if you've already had a COVID-19 positive test in the past 12 weeks as it may give a false positive result.

You can still get tested if you've been asked to self-isolate for 10 days by the NHS Test and Trace Programme or by our own Public Health team, but you must complete your period of self-isolation, even if you test negative.

Get a test at a drop-in site

You can get a drive-through test in Tilbury, at the London International Cruise Terminal car park, without needing to book online first.

Drop-in between between 9am and 3pm on any day during the week or at weekends.

Google Maps directions to the London International Cruise Terminal, Tilbury.

Book a test at a drive-through or walk-in site, or by post

Go to the government's website, below, to:

  • book for a drive-through test at a site in Corringham, Grays or Orsett Heath
  • ask to get a test by post

Drive-through sites are open on weekdays and weekends.

GOV.UK: get a coronavirus test

You will be asked a series of questions when you book a drive-through test – you should:

  • select 'No' to essential worker – this is a different kind of testing
  • select 'Continue' at the end of the 'Tests available' page
  • select 'No' to having symptoms
  • select 'No' to being asked to get a follow-up test
  • select 'No' for 'Is the person who needs a test part of a trial or government pilot project?''
  • select 'My local council or health protection team has asked me (or someone I live with) to get a test, even though I do not have symptoms'

To ask to get your test by post, you should follow the first 4 steps above, then:

  • select 'Yes' for 'Is the person who needs a test part of a trial or government pilot project?'
  • select 'The person is taking part in community testing'

Places where you can get a drive-through test are listed within the government's booking system. You can choose your preferred place, but book early as spaces may be limited. If all Thurrock sites are fully booked, you should try again the next day.

Collect a testing kit from a library

You can pick up and drop-off a testing kit from any of the following libraries:

You don't need to book this test online.

The libraries are open from 8am to 7pm on weekdays and 9am to 4pm at weekends for collecting and dropping-off test kits only – you cannot use any other service at these libraries.

Parking is limited so you may need to use on-street parking nearby. After picking up your test:

A courier collects completed tests each day from the libraries.

Testing kits are no longer available from Stanley Lazell Hall in Grays.

Self-isolating

You don't have to self-isolate just because you've taken a test, but you must self-isolate immediately if any of the NHS's reasons for self-isolating apply to you.

For guidance, go to NHS: when to self-isolate and what to do.

If you are employed or self-employed on a low income and have to self-isolate at home, you may be entitled to a one-off Test and Trace Support payment.