Douglas Borough Council, via Douglas Development Partnership, is purchasing a Saturday Shopmobility service.
This is in addition to the normal weekday service provided by Shopmobility Isle of Man under the umbrella of the Manx charity CIRCA.
The service will be provided initially for one year at a cost to the Council of £5,340 and will operate on Saturdays from 10am to 4pm from May 17th.
Development manager Chris Pycroft explained: ‘Bringing about this extended service is a practical example of effective partnership working between central government, in this instance the Department of Social Care, local government and the third sector.
‘The Saturday Shopmobility service will open up opportunities for people with limited mobility to get around Douglas town centre more easily on one of the most popular days of the week for shopping and leisure activities.’
Minister for Health and Social Care Howard Quayle MHK said: ‘It is rare to find this type of partnership between the Department of Health and Social Care, Douglas Borough Council, Douglas Development Partnership and CIRCA to deliver a Shopmobility scheme. It is a great example of joined-up working.’
Douglas Borough Council leader Councillor David Christian said: ‘We are grateful to the Department of Health and Social Care for its continuing commitment to CIRCA, and for the charity to provide the Shopmobility scheme which the Council is pleased to support. Extending this valuable service comes at a time when the town centre regeneration scheme is helping create an improved retail environment and making Douglas a more attractive place for people of all abilities to enjoy.’
Launching the service CIRCA chair Margaret Brown said: ‘This is a perfect example of organisations working together. Shopmobility is a vital service for the people – locals and visitors alike – of Douglas and the rest of the island. Whatever a person’s age or needs, if they have mobility problems Shopmobility can help people regain their independence. Being off your feet doesn’t mean giving up your freedom.’
Mrs Brown added that to mark the introduction of the Saturday service, for one day only on Saturday May 17th there would be a special offer of ‘Get Around for a Pound’ when any item of Shopmobility equipment can be hired for a donation to CIRCA of just £1, subject to availability.
The Shopmobility scheme operates from CIRCA House, on level 2 of Chester Street car park, Monday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm. 613713, firstname.lastname@example.org