A NORTH Yorkshire events venue is set to be turned into an NHS Nightingale hospital in the fight against coronavirus, according to reports.

The Harrogate Convention Centre was a hive of activity today (Tuesday) amid reports it is going to join facilities around the UK in providing extra beds to treat patients.

The reports have not yet been confirmed by the NHS but Andrew Jones, MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, has welcomed the news that the venue appears to have been chosen as a temporary hospital.

York Press: Workers at the Harrogate Convention Centre. Picture: Danny Lawson/ PA WireWorkers at the Harrogate Convention Centre. Picture: Danny Lawson/ PA Wire

In a statement, Mr Jones said: "The fight against the coronavirus outbreak is a national endeavour and I am proud that Harrogate is playing its full part in that fight.

"The convention centre provides versatile space in a well-connected location that has proved itself over decades.

"It has been successfully used for high-profile, high-security sensitive functions and I believe these factors will have been important in the Government and NHS deciding we should host a Nightingale hospital.

"This is the biggest crisis to face our nation since the Second World War. The biggest thing we can all do to help is to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

"In our area, it is great that we have gone further and are playing an important role in the wider national effort."

York Press: Picture: Danny Lawson/ PA WirePicture: Danny Lawson/ PA Wire

NHS England said they could not confirm that the centre in Harrogate would be used as a field hospital but a spokeswoman said: "NHS England is actively preparing for a number of scenarios as the Covid-19 outbreak unfolds and is working with clinicians and teams of military planners to support the local health service around the country."

Activity could be seen at the centre on Tuesday, where security guards wearing masks were stood at the gate and people were carrying boxes inside the grounds.

Workers wearing hard hats and overalls were present inside the building and forklift trucks were being used to move goods in the car park.

York Press: Picture: Danny Lawson/ PA WirePicture: Danny Lawson/ PA Wire

The NHS Nightingale Hospital at London's ExCel centre was the first to be announced, with the Docklands facility being converted by soldiers and trade contractors to provide capacity for 4,000 beds.

Initially, 500 beds equipped with ventilators and oxygen will be used to treat the seriously ill and their numbers are expected to swell in the capital ahead of the rest of the nation.

The National Exhibition Centre, in Birmingham, will add an initial 500 beds, with the potential to grow to 2,000 if necessary.

Manchester's Central Convention Complex will add 500 more, with the capacity to expand to 1,000 and Cardiff's Principality Stadium will provide up to 2,000 more.

It has been reported that there could be at least 10 temporary hospitals set up nationwide during the Covid-19 pandemic.