A Shopmobility service in Yate, near Bristol, has been guaranteed for at least this year after a local shopping centre stepped in to provide it with much needed funding.
The Shopmobility facility in Yate Shopping Centre has been secured through to 2020 after the centre agreed to donate £5,000 towards the equipment hire scheme.
Last year it expressed worries over funding and the feasibility of keeping the service operating.
Yate’s scheme currently has around 1,500 hires annually and its project manager hopes hires will increase with better promotion and an ageing population.
Sheridan Crew, project manager at Shopmobility South Gloucestershire, said: “We are extremely grateful to the Shopping Centre for stepping in to help us through 2019 thus strengthening the good working relationship between both parties.
“We have over 1,000 people on our register and support over 250 people annually. Furthermore, we are increasing our opening hours to try to attract more users and have made social contacts with organisations in other areas including Stroud, Dursley and Badminton in order to meet other users.
“Sponsorship such as that by the shopping centre is critical for the future of the service and we are always looking for new opportunities.”
Andy Lowrey, Yate Shopping Centre manager, said: “The Shopmobility unit in West Walk offers a vital service to those who don’t already own a mobility scooter and enables them to take full advantage of the wide range of shops and services on offer in the Centre.
“Importantly the shopping centre is all on one level but Shopmobility allows those that require the service total freedom of access throughout both the main centre and the adjoining riverside leisure facilities, including the Cineworld cinema.
“Supporting local charities such as this is an important part of our community work and I am pleased that we are able to help them through the year.”
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