The vaccination roll-out in Powys will continue to run from Newtown's Maldwyn Leisure Centre until at least the end of the year.

Powys Teaching Health Board and Freedom Leisure have confirmed a plan to continue their partnership in using the town's leisure centre for vaccinations for the rest of 2021.

Powys has the highest rates of vaccination of any health board in Wales, which has been attributed in part to partnership working such as at the Maldwyn.

Adrian Osborne, programme director for Covid-19 vaccination in Powys said: “Having a venue like Maldwyn Leisure Centre at the heart of the vaccination programme is absolutely critical.

"The vaccination programme has been heavily dependent on the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. At the start of the vaccination programme this vaccine arrived in trays of over 1,100 doses that needed to be used within four days. It was therefore vital that the county had venues like the leisure centre that could accommodate very large numbers of people for vaccination in a short space of time.

"The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has very specific requirements for storage and administration. For example, everyone receiving the vaccine needs to sit and wait for 15 minutes afterwards, and this needs to happen in an environment that meets all requirements for social distancing and infection prevention and control. Only the very largest venues can accommodate the whole vaccination process of booking in, clinical assessment, vaccination administration, 15 minutes sit and wait, and checking out.

"Maldwyn Leisure Centre was the only venue in the north of the county that could offer us the capacity to deliver Covid-19 vaccination at large scale and at pace.”

Gwyn Owen from Freedom Leisure said: “Continuing the vaccination programme will help to ensure that all of us can return in time to all of the activities that we value.

"Over the next few months it's vital that we continue to support the vaccination programme through our leisure centre in Newtown, and this in turn will help to continue our journey back to normality in 2022.”

Invitations are under way for booster doses. People who are eligible for a booster dose will normally receive their invitation between six and eight months after their second dose for an appointment in a mass vaccination centre.