West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust have been offered use of Vicarage Road by Watford FC to help them deal with the coronavirus pandemic. 

Watford General Hospital is situated next door to the stadium on Vicarage Road and the club has told the Trust they will do whatever they can to help. 

In a statement on the club website, chief executive Scott Duxbury said: “We need to forget football right now and concentrate on doing all we can to support the NHS and, in particular, Watford General Hospital.

“Our proximity as a football club next door to a hospital puts us in a great position to offer help and we're keen to do whatever we possibly can to support NHS staff and their families.

“The UK Government's message has been about doing 'whatever it takes'. Likewise, we'll do 'whatever it takes' here at Vicarage Road to offer our fullest support to the NHS and its people at a time when it's clearly needed most.”

The hospital has direct access to the ground via the Graham Taylor stand and NHS staff are said to be co-ordinating their exact requirements.

The club have also stated they are preparing to host NHS staff induction courses, urgent meeting spaces, warehousing needs, childcare facilities and more.

Christine Allen, Chief Executive of West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “Right now, we are doing all we can to make sure we can focus on caring for our sickest patients.

"We have found ourselves needing extra space very quickly. For example, we are running refresher training to our clinical staff so that they can care for patients with breathing difficulties.

“And we also need more space so that we can stick to important guidance about social distancing for our staff induction sessions and for key meetings when we need our senior leadership teams around the table.

“The club’s support is helping us to run our organisation safely and we are very grateful for their support at this challenging time.”