The chair of a Yorkshire charity is tackling a 24 hour journey on a mobility scooter next month to highlight the everyday challenges facing people with disabilities.
Martyn Weller from York will be travelling from Disability Action Yorkshire’s (DAY) Harrogate headquarters to the charity’s new holiday lodge in Kenwick Park Estate, Louth, Lincolnshire on June 30 and July 1.
He must average 5.2mph to complete the 125 mile journey – his scooter is flat out at just 8mph. Martyn, who can only use footpaths or minor roads, has special permission to ride over the Humber Bridge using the cycle lane.
As well as drawing attention to mobility issues facing disabled people, Martyn will be raising funds to help pay for the charity’s new holiday home – one of only a handful in the country specially adapted for people with disabilities.
Martyn, who was born with spina bifida said:
Many disabled people face mobility challenges every day because public transport isn’t particularly user friendly and they have to rely on others to help them travel any distance.
We get fantastic fundraising support from non disabled people, but I wanted to show that a disabled person can also take on a challenge and make a difference.
Hull-based The Mobility Partnership, one of the UK’s largest retailers of mobility scooters, is providing two mobility scooters for the journey. One of their team will be travelling alongside Martyn in a support van with 12 batteries.
Owner Ian Richmond said:
The batteries will only last for six hours so Martyn will have to stop for a quick change every 35 miles or so. His biggest challenge on the journey will be the weather.
Disability Action Yorkshire has spent £50,000 equipping the new holiday lodge set in woodland in the 320 acre Kenwick Park Estate at Louth. Anyone can book the lodge, which is fully adapted for disabled people.
Jade Marshall, from Harrogate, tested out the new holiday home.
It’s important to provide accessible holiday accommodation because disabled people and their families, too, want to be able to go on holiday. Why should they have to stay in their own homes all the time? They too want to explore different parts of Britain and it is a massive comfort to be able to rely on a well adapted and comfortable holiday cottage.
“The cottage in Louth caters for people with a variety of needs and is large enough for the whole family. One of the most impressive things about it is that it is well thought out and has contemporary decor and furnishings. The whole place feels comfortable, just as a home would.
Disability Action Yorkshire provides residential care, home care and training for disabled people throughout the region.
You can follow Martyn’s progress on Twitter @2012DAytoDAY and donate online at http://uk.virginmomeygiving.com/DAYtoDAYChallenge
For further details on the Holiday Lodge go to www.disabilityholidaysuk.org.uk