What to do if you or someone else is unwell over the upcoming Bank Holidays

Knowing the right place for medical help over the Christmas holidays can help you get the treatment you need faster.
Banner saying Accessing urgent healthcare in Redbridge over the holidays, with the Healthwatch Redbridge logo and a snowman icon

More than 140,000 people attended A&E in north east London (NEL) last December and January and local hospital emergency departments are expected to be extremely busy again this year. Patients will often be seen quicker by visiting their local pharmacy or a GP, even during the holiday season.

Urgent GP appointments

GP appointments will be available to book throughout the festive period to patients in Redbridge, including from 8am to 8pm on all bank holidays, such as Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

GP appointments are also available every weekday evening between 6.30pm and 10pm and between 8am and 8pm on weekends and bank holidays.

To access an urgent GP appointments in Redbridge:

 Call 020 3649 4499 (between 8am - 8pm)

or call NHS 111 at any time, seven days a week

You can find more information on the North East London NHS website.

Pharmacies open over the Bank Holidays

Most minor health conditions can be treated at home and local pharmacists can help. There are many over-the-counter medications which can be used to alleviate symptoms of winter viruses such as cold or flu without needing to use antibiotics.

The following pharmacies in Redbridge will be open on the Bank Holidays:

Eden Pharmacy

79-85 Goodmayes Road, Goodmayes IG3 9UB

020 8597 3477

  • Christmas day (Sunday 25th December) - open 10:00-18:00
  • Boxing Day (Monday 26th December) - open 11:00-15:00 
  • Bank Holiday (Tuesday 27th December) - open 11:00-15:00 
  • New Years Day (Sunday 1st January) - open 11:00-15:00 
  • Bank Holiday (Monday 2nd January) - open 11:00-15:00 

Britannia Pharmacy at Loxford Polyclinic

Loxford Polyclinic, 417 Ilford Lane, Ilford IG1 2SN

020 8478 4347

  • Christmas day (Sunday 25th December) - open 10:00-18:00
  • Boxing Day (Monday 26th December) - open 11:00-15:00
  • Bank Holiday (Tuesday 27th December) - open 11:00-15:00
  • New Years Day (Sunday 1st January) - open 11:00-15:00 
  • Bank Holiday (Monday 2nd January) - open 11:00-15:00

You can also find an open, late night pharmacy on the NHS find a pharmacy website and you can find a list of all pharmacies open across London on the North East London NHS website.

NHS 111

If you have an urgent but not life-threatening medical need, make sure you visit NHS 111 online first. NHS 111 online makes it easier for you to get the treatment you need in the right place at the right time.

If you cannot use the internet, call 111. NHS 111 can book you an appointment at an urgent treatment centre, emergency dental service, or with a GP and can even book you an appointment at A&E if necessary.

In the event of a life threatening emergency, always call 999.

Accessible ways to contact NHS 111

  • Text relay - call 18001 111 using text relay, 24 hours a day
  • British sign language (BSL) - Use signvideo.co.uk/nhs111
  • Help in other languages - call 111 and ask for an interpreter

Urgent Treatment Centre

You can also get help with minor injuries and illnesses at the community urgent treatment centre at Barking Community Hospital, which is open from 8am to 9pm, seven days a week. You can call NHS 111 to book an appointment or walk in and wait to be seen.

Mental health support

If you need support for your mental health over the holidays, you can contact the North East London Foundation Trust (NELFT) mental health direct line, any time of the day or night. They can arrange for you to speak with a mental health professional and can also advise you about what service to contact to get the support you need.

To contact the NELFT Mental Health direct line:

0800 995 1000 (open 24 hours a day)

Please note: this is a freephone number and callers will not be charged.

You can also find more information about the service on their website:

Other useful contacts for mental health support

If you are in immediate risk or fear for your safety, always call 999


116 123 (open 24 hours a day)


Text SHOUT on 85258 (open 24 hours a day)


0300 123 3393 (10am to 6pm, Monday to Friday, except for bank holidays. The Mind helplines will be closed on bank holidays 26 and 27 December and 2 January)