Hopping to raise travel awareness

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A SPONSORED bounce has raised several hundred pounds towards the cost of a minibus for adults with physical and mental disabilities.

Susan Hemming, activities co-ordinator at Belgrave Lodge in Meadowcroft, travelled two and a half miles and bounced for three and a half hours on a space hopper.

She said: “I wanted to make a point about just how hard it can be to get from one place to another if you don’t have appropriate transport, as is the case with our residents.

“They often try to use taxis which can take only one wheelchair at a time, fighting higher prices to travel shorter distances, finding themselves late when taxis are late and unreliable.

“I had only one difficult journey; our residents experience problems every time they wish to commute from Meadowcroft into town.”

There are seven residents living at the lodge, with a variety of complex needs including complications of dementia, mobility problems, Down’s Syndrome and autistic traits.

Ms Hemming raised £300 towards the cost of the £3,500 minibus and there is still £800 to go before it can be bought.

She said: “It will make a huge difference to the quality of life of our residents.

“At the moment trips any further afield than the centre of town are simply too expensive.

“The residents enjoy getting out and accessing the community, seeing the world around them – it offers so much mental stimulation.

“In the past we were able to borrow a minibus, but it has now broken down. When we were able to use it we went on trips to safari parks, zoos, bowling and Wendover Woods.

“At the present time most of our activities are based in house.”