The Penta Hotel quarantine service on Oxford Road will close at the end of this month.

Reading Borough Council (RBC) had called for the Penta Hotel quarantine facility to close earlier this month after the Covid-19 virus spread between residents, staff and the local community.

Penta Hotels has now confirmed the hotel will stop running as a quarantine facility on June 30, in line with initial contract it agreed with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC).

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Reading Chronicle: The hotel has been fenced off as a quarantine facilityThe hotel has been fenced off as a quarantine facility

A spokesman said: “Penta Hotels confirms that Pentahotel Reading will be concluding operations as a Quarantine Managed Facility (QMF) as of June 30, 2021 in line with the length of contract initially agreed with the DHSC.

“As Penta Hotels will resume ownership of operations at the hotel, we will be closing the hotel for a period to allow for deep cleaning and set up, in preparation for welcoming back regular business and leisure travellers.

“At the time of this statement, a date for the public re-opening has not yet been confirmed.

“From April 29, 2021, until June 30, 2021, the property follows directly the security guidelines and policies set out by the government department.

“Therefore, Penta Hotels is not in a position to comment on any queries related to this QMF period.”

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Quarantine hotels are for travellers returning from red-listed countries such as India, where the highly transmissible Delta variant originated.

At least 44 positive cases of COVID-19 have been identified among residents and staff at the DHSC quarantine facility at the Penta Hotel on the Oxford Road since it opened in late April.

The majority of these cases are the Delta variant and at least three cases in the community have been directly linked to the outbreak at the hotel.

On March 9, RBC leader Jason Brock said the council did not have confidence that robust enough safety measures had been put in place and asked for the facility to be shut down, a request the DHSC rejected.

The DHSC has been approached for comment.