Coronavirus: Some UK visa centres will reopen on 1 June


Update 19 June: More UK VCAS centres will open through July

Sopra Steria, the company which runs the UK VCAS centres, updated their guidance on Friday 19 June. The updated guidance states that appointments are still mainly being provided to applicants who applied before the centres closed but new applicants should receive an email with information on changes being introduced to return to normal booking processes as soon as possible. They have also provided a list of when other UK VCAS centres should reopen.


Update 12 June: UK VCAS appointments are not yet available to new applicants

While the UK VCAS centres listed below opened as planned the Home Office have clarified that currently appointments are only available to those who had applied before the centres closed and whose appointments were cancelled or postponed. Those submitting new applications from within the UK are not yet able to book appointments but we hope that this should change soon when the backlog of applications is processed. You must still submit your visa application before your current visa expires, but as it will take longer to obtain a UK VCAS appointment the processing of your application will be delayed. We will provide further updates as soon as any further information is released.



Home Office guidance has been updated to include the following list of UK VCAS centres which will reopen on 1 June:

  • Birmingham
  • Birmingham Premium Lounge
  • Chelmsford
  • Croydon
  • Exeter
  • Leeds
  • London Mark Lane Premium Lounge
  • London Victoria
  • Manchester Fountain Street Enhanced Service Point
  • Manchester Premium Lounge
  • Sheffield
  • Southampton

There is likely to be very high demand for UK VCAS appointments when these centres reopen. We understand that applicants who had already booked an appointment and were contacted to say that this would be rescheduled when the UK VCAS centres reopened may be offered a new appointment. Home Office guidance states that if an applicant is offered an appointment at a different centre and cannot attend they can ask to wait for an appointment at a centre closer to them and this will not affect their status.

Those who submitted their applications after the centres closed and were unable to book an appointment will need to go back into their Sopra Steria account to check for available slots and book an appointment.

As 'Life in the UK' and English language test centres in the UK are still closed, those applying for ILR will need to wait until they reopen to pass their tests before booking a UK VCAS appointment to continue their application.

If you're applying outside the UK

Home Office guidance states that some UK Visa Application Centres (VACs) are starting to resume services but as this will depend on local restrictions applicants will need to check the status of VACs in the country where they are applying through the websites of the companies which run these centres:

  • TLS contact if you’re in Europe, Africa and parts of the Middle East
  • VFS global for all other countries

The guidance also states that some English Testing Centres are also resuming services. Applicants will need to Visit the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)’s website, the Pearson Test of English website or the LanguageCert website or contact their nearest test centre for more information on when they may be reopening and how to book a Secure English Language Test.

The Staff Immigration Team (SIT) will continue to advise and assist applicants and their departments/ faculty/ college.

Students should contact the UAS Student Immigration for information and advice.

More news

1 Start 2 Complete
List of site pages