In response to the current coronavirus situation, plans are in now in place for the operation of a temporary mortuary at Southampton Airport to serve Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southampton. Separate arrangements are in place for the Isle of Wight.
The area set aside is a specially adapted secure location on one side of the airfield, known as the Grayson Site, and is completely separate from the passenger terminal.
Simon Bryant, Director of Public Health, Hampshire County Council said: “Local partner organisations across the wider Hampshire region, are working closely together to ensure arrangements are in place to support communities during this difficult time. Integral to our planning is the need to ensure the area is equipped with additional mortuary space, should we need it.”
“While I understand that people may be concerned about this development, it is important that we are well prepared.”
“I would like to reassure the families and friends of those who may be accommodated temporarily at the Grayson Site that their loved ones will be afforded every possible respect, and that we have been liaising closely with faith leaders to ensure that required customs and practices will be observed at all times.”
He added: “We can also assure residents that all necessary precautions will be taken to ensure the highest standards of health and safety are maintained at all times onsite.”
Southampton Airport continues to operate a small number of daily ‘Lifeline’ flights – transporting essential goods to the Channel Islands. Normal robust 24/7 security arrangements remain in place across the airport site. The site will also be a priority for enhanced police patrols in the area, both during the day and night. Access to the site is not available to the public.