Shopmobility marks 21st birthday

Last month the charity Shopmobility reached its 21st year of operating within Lisburn and Sprucefield.

Friday, 12th November 2021, 11:26 am
Lisburn’s Deputy Mayor, Tim Mitchell with Shopmobility Lisburn’s Scheme Coordinator, Chanel McKinstry

Shopmobility Lisburn is a registered charity who lend out wheelchairs and mobility scooters to everyone that visit Lisburn city who has mobility issues.

They are situated within the city centre and at Sprucefield centre.

The occasion was marked with the scheme’s volunteers handing out pre-packed treats at the Bow Street Mall location, along with running a live prize draw on Facebook.

The Scheme Coordinator, Chanel McKinstry and Tim Honeyford – Manager of Sprucefield Centre

Showing his support for all their hard work, Lisburn’s Deputy Mayor, Cllr Tim Mitchell, attended the event.

On behalf of Shopmobility, the scheme coordinator Chanel McKinstry presented a token of thanks to the longest standing board member and a founder of the charity, Tim Honeyford, manager of Sprucefield Centre.

Mr Honeyford said: “I am really proud to have been a founding member of Shopmobility Lisburn and am delighted that we have reached our 21st birthday.

“The charity is so important to people with mobility problems, giving them the freedom to meet with friends and shop the high street and shopping centres.

Senior Volunteer, Louise Cairnduff Rodgers, helping out at the 21st celebratory event at Bow Street Mall

“The charity has been largely run by a team of dedicated volunteers since its inception and their commitment to the job is the reason we are still here after 21 years.”

The Chair of the committee, Karen Marshall, Bow Street Mall Manager, stated: “I have been involved with Shopmobility Lisburn for around 10 years and I am very proud of the fact that the charity is now celebrating its 21st year of operation.

“There are 13 Shopmobility schemes around Northern Ireland, but Shopmobility Lisburn is the only charity within the Lisburn area that provides a ‘free to use’ service which includes wheelchairs and electric mobility scooters to those in need.

“We all know how important it is to get out and about, to go shopping or have a coffee and catch up with friends or family, but for some those everyday tasks would be impossible without the aid of Shopmobility’s services. “The past 18 months have been extremely challenging for everyone, including Shopmobility Lisburn, but it’s great to be opened again and enjoying this time of celebration and reflection.

“I would like to pay tribute to our committed Board members, past and present, our scheme coordinator Chanel, and our fantastic volunteers who have helped the charity over the past 21 years.

“We couldn’t have done it without them. I would also like to thank Department for Infrastructure for providing funding to enable us to continue our work, and also to all of the other funders who have helped us over the years, including Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council.”

Scheme Coordinator Chanel McKinstry added: “We are a small charity that really needs more support. The scheme is vital to Lisburn City, we not only contribute towards helping people come out of social isolation but attract visitors by making the city more accessible to those with disabilities that may otherwise not be able to walk around the city centre. We also help with the local economy by introducing and encouraging ‘purple pound’ spending to local businesses.”

Anyone who would like more information on the scheme can visit www.shopmobilitylisburn.com. If you would like to get involved by volunteering contact [email protected]