Approval for the NHS to take over Derby Arena and run it as a mass vaccination centre for Covid-19 will be urgently given by Derby City Council at a specially-convened meeting tomorrow.
It is understood that the council will receive in excess of £250,000 from the Government to allow the arena to be used, although the full licence fee has still to be agreed.
It will come into use as a vaccination centre when approval of one or more of various vaccines in production is given but an NHS spokesman could not say if it would be early as in the next two weeks as has been suggested nationally.
But the speed of the NHS request to use the arena, revealed by Derbyshire Live last week, means that council leader Councillor Chris Poulter will have to give permission urgently for the arena to be licensed and used, as the next cabinet meeting at which it could be done is not until Wednesday, December 9.
The arena is currently closed during the second lockdown and its usage has been severely impacted during 2020 because of on-and-off closures and restrictions.
The NHS’ occupation of the arena will be time-limited and on a non-exclusive basis. Under the licence, the council will retain the right to use the arena, including the gym and other first-floor operations and also to be able to accommodate the local election count in May.