Abergavenny Shopmobility F.A.Q.’s.

F.A.Q?...  Frequently Asked Questions!

 

What is Shopmobility?

Shopmobility is a service that improves access and freedom for people with limited mobility. We loan out powered scooters and wheelchairs to members of the public who find getting around the shopping area difficult. The facilities are not only available to disabled people but also to people whose mobility is restricted by age, illness or accident, whether it is permanent or temporary.

The service is extremely simple but has far reaching consequences for those that use it and for the shopping area in which it is located. Residents and visitors are provided with mobility and therefore gain their rightful independence and autonomy. Shopmobility provides equal access to shopping facilities and to the benefits that this brings with it – companionship, freedom and independence.

What type of vehicles do you have?

We currently have 3 and 4 wheel medium scooters, 4 wheel heavy duty scooters, both types of manual wheelchairs (transit and self propelling) and we are currently working on adding electric wheelchairs.

Is there any charge?

There is no charge for the service, though we do ask for a 20 deposit whilst the vehicle is out, naturally this is returned in full when the vehicle comes back.

What is the procedure?

No doctor’s note or medical certificate is required and you do not need to be registered disabled to use the scheme. When you arrive for the first time you will be given instruction on how to use the scooter and we will fill in a few forms which will register you with the scheme, the whole procedure usually takes between ten and twenty minutes. We do ask that you bring some identification containing your name and address with you on your first visit. You can then take your scooter out and shop.

Once registered members just sign a vehicle out when ever they need one.

Do I need to book first?

Not normally, however if your travelling some distance to get to us, or if it’s a market or event day, we recommend that you ring first to check. Remember it’s a freephone number.

What are the best days?

We’re open Tuesday to Saturday, Tuesday is market day in Abergavenny and consequently the pavements and car parks are a little more crowded than normal. If you’re using the scheme for the first time then wed-fri are the quieter days, if you want to come in on a Tuesday try and get in early as the car park soon fills up.

What about car parking?

The Shopmobility scheme is situated in a cabin near the toilets in Castle Street Car Park a large spacious open-air car park, behind the post office and near the castle. Alongside us are 16 extra wide parking spaces for disabled motorists and if these are full, anybody with a blue badge can park in any of the remaining spaces within the rest of the car park without charge.

What happens if I come in by Bus?

The bus station is a bit of a walk from our cabin but right next to it is the tourist information centre. Simply ring us to let us know your coming then on the day that you arrive go into the tourist information centre and we’ll either have a scooter there waiting for you, or we’ll bring it down to you when you get there. Please do ring first.

Can you provide an escort?

Yes but as with the service above we ask that this is booked in advance. Escorts are usually provided for those of a nervous disposition, or those suffering from eyesight or hearing difficulties.

What happens if I break down?

Abergavenny Shopmobility is part of the area services team which is based in the town’s One Stop Shop, in the unlikely event of a breakdown or puncture, you need only go into the nearest shop who will ring us or the One Stop Shop and help will soon arrive.

Is the service just for the shops?

No, obviously the majority of members use the scooters for shopping but some will take them into places like Linda Vista gardens, Bailey Park, Castle meadows etc where they can enjoy the peace and scenery. The scheme is all about returning freedom and choice to people who have had it denied them.

Can I take the scooters onto the road?

Within the scheme scooters are allowed to cross the road but not drive along it.

Can I take a scooter into the Shops?

As a historic market town some of the shops are old fashioned listed buildings, which look great and contribute tremendously to the character of Abergavenny but frankly aren’t ideal for access. It should be stated that equally there are many large and spacious modern shops where scooters can be driven in with little difficulty. However where access is a problem steps are being taken with schemes like ‘customer assist’ where if you can’t get in then the staff will come out to you.

What speed do the scooters do?

The medium scooters manage a maximum speed of 4mph, the heavy-duties can do 8mph but it must be remembered that the maximum legal speed on a footpath is 4mph. All speed controls are fully adjustable and in real terms the scooter speeds vary between very slow and brisk walking pace

How is Abergavenny Shopmobility run?

Abergavenny Shopmobility was set up and funded for a one-year trial by Monmouthshire County Council in partnership with Abergavenny Chamber of trade and commerce, SWALEC and Llanover Community Council. It is run by a part time co-ordinator and a dedicated band of hard working volunteers.

 

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