WORCESTER’S university is calling for the city to become a covid-19 “cold zone” as students and staff return to campus.

A spokesman for the university said its mix of in-person and remote tutoring will help keep the spread of coronavirus down.

They said: "Our blended learning approach, which mixes in-person teaching with online has become our approach across our courses as a whole.

"We are very committed to continuing this vital work which enables our graduates to contribute so much to the community.

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"We very much hope that we can continue this important work and will do all in our power to make Worcester a coronavirus cold spot whilst the University remains an educational hot spot."

This comes after universities minister Michelle Donelan urged students and staff in the city to stay focused on beating coronavirus.

She said: “We have already seen a mammoth effort from universities with a host of protective measures being put in place, such as limiting travel into campus, staggering class times over extended days, and reinforcing hand hygiene, to keep students and local residents as safe as we can during this time.

"But I have been clear that health advice only works if we all follow it and I am urging students, just like the wider public, to do their bit and act responsibly.

"I have faith in students that they will follow the guidance and by doing so protect their family, friends and local communities, and ensure campuses can remain open.”

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The university spokesman also said they have been working on Covid-19 protection measures throughout the last six months, preparing for the return of students.

They added: "Throughout, the University’s priority has been and is the safety and wellbeing of all our students, staff and the wider community, whilst simultaneously ensuring our vital educational work continues.

"We are very grateful to Worcestershire County Council’s Public Health team, with whom we have been working throughout the summer to prepare for the return of in-person teaching, with extensive social distancing and Covid-secure measures introduced on campus, as the Minister for Universities has noted.

"Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic Worcester students have acted as community volunteers, while those with health professional skills have volunteered to join the frontline, despite the risks."