The closure of a charity which provided wheelchairs and scooters to make shopping easier for disabled people and the elderly in Dundee was treated with dismay.
Shopmobility, based at the Overgate Centre, closed its doors just before last Christmas after 28 years in Dundee.
At the time, one pensioner said the closure would make it “impossible” for her to shop in town.
But now, almost 12 months later, a new mobility service will start in Dundee, in time for people to do their Christmas shopping.
Circle Mobility plans
The new venture, called The Circle Mobility, will be managed by Dundee-based social enterprise The Circle.
It will also be located at the Overgate Shopping Centre, and offer mobility scooters and other aids for loan on a donation basis.
Running from Monday, the initial relaunch will focus on providing the service to Overgate customers.
However The Circle plans to expand next year to other Dundee venues, including other shopping centres and tourist attractions.
Circle Mobility also aims to provide a city-wide service delivering equipment to those in need of a short-term mobility aid next summer.
Supported by Dundee City Council and Northwood Charitable Trust, the service will operate between Mondays and Thursdays.
‘Access should be available to all citizens’
News of the service has been welcomed by Dundee groups campaigning for greater accessibility.
Dorothy McHugh, secretary of Dundee Pensioners’ Forum, said: “Circle Mobility will provide much needed support for older people and people with disabilities.
“It allows them an opportunity to do a bit of shopping in comfort. They will be able to soak up the Christmas atmosphere that will be building over the next few weeks.
“Now that we are beyond the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic, many older people and people with disabilities are venturing out into society again.
“This service will be a great help to them.”
The Circle’s hub manager Martin Cleary adds: “We will meet a need within the city centre.
“Access to shopping and social interactions should be easily available to all citizens of the city.
“Our service will make it a little easier for those who need a chair to comfortably visit the centre.”