Stephen Sharp, 62, missed his first holiday since the start of the pandemic after his first result at a local test centre in Leeds came back positive – quickly followed by a negative

Stephen Sharp
Stephen Sharp claims a wrong positive Covid test cost him holiday abroad

A farmer who claims he missed out on a family holiday because of a false-positive Covid result has slammed the “shocking” testing system.

Stephen Sharp, 62, had planned to visit Portugal over Christmas with his wife and in-laws and booked PCR tests at a nearby facility on December 20.

But whilst his family’s came back as negative, Stephen’s said he was positive, according to Leeds Live.

He decided to take another test hours before the flight was due to leave at the airport which came back negative.

Instead of boarding the plane he chose to explore the anomaly and so missed his first holiday since the pandemic hit.

The second test came back negative (stock image)


Getty Images/iStockphoto)

He said: “It is shocking the way the system is being run. I received a positive test and then hours later a negative one and I could have flown away.

“I live alone on a 70-acre farm and had not had any contact with anyone for two years. This was my first time coming out.”

“I won’t take this lying down. It has to be addressed.”

Stephen says there had been a mistake with the first PCR test at the centre in Leeds, West Yorks, near his home, prompting him to take a second which came back negative.

He says it has cost him £500 in taking the tests, as well as more money for the missed holiday.

He added: “That false test cost me a lot.”

The testing centre has been approached for comment.

Current rules for anyone travelling into Portugal mean passengers must complete an online locator card and be ready to show a negative Covid-19 test result for everyone over the age of 11.

If you are planning a holiday abroad it is suggested you:

  • Check the entry rules for your chosen holiday destination as each country has its own border requirements – you can find these in the Foreign Office travel advice for a country, or you can also speak to your holiday operator/travel agent.
  • Take a pre-departure Covid test within 48 hours before your departure back to the UK.
  • If you’re vaccinated, you’ll need to then self-isolate for two days and take a PCR test on day two, where a negative result releases you from self-isolation.
  • If you’re unvaccinated, you’ll need to self-isolate for 10 days in the UK and take PCR tests on days two and eight.

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