Sunday, 19 February 2012

Ely Shopmobility

The other day we went to see Ely Cathedral. A blog post and photos will soon follow charting this, but I thought first I would put up what will hopefully be a useful resource for anyone thinking of using Ely Shopmobility.

I'd never used the Shopmobility service before. For anyone who doesn't know, Shopmobility are a charity who give disabled people access to mobility equipment (wheelchairs/scooters) in town centres throughout the UK free of charge. You do have to register with them to use this service, and so on my first visit I had to take with me a piece of ID confirming my address (in case I decided to, you know, ram-raid a bank or some such).

The staff (who were actually staff members working in the local museum) were extremely kind and helpful and are a credit to the museum and Shopmobility both.

Be warned - Ely Shopmobility is only available on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays (top tip - Thursday is market day, so for a quiet day out, aim to go on a Friday) 10.30 - 13.00 and 14.00 - 16.00 and you must pre-book a slot.

Link to Shopmobility Ely site.

The most difficult thing about it, though, was working out where to park. Shopmobility are, as I said, based in the local museum. The museum, however, has been built in the old Bishop's Gaol and sadly, when building the gaol in the 13th century, they didn't think much about where to park the odd hatchback or two (hunchbacks, however, they were totally comfortable with).

So Shopmobility parking is based in the East Cambridgeshire District Council carpark off Nutholt Lane. We had a bit of difficulty finding this, driving past it at least twice. So, here is a Google Maps Street View link to the entrance to the car park.

The only other problem is then getting to the Museum, but what we didn't originally realise was that they've got a button set up to summon a staff-member! I'll put an image below highlighting the post and button (no.1) and the designated Shopmobility parking spaces (no.2).

So there you go - hopefully this will encourage you to try out the service. It worked extremely well - the machines were in good condition and were to be serviced soon regardless.

And if you need a reason to try Ely Shopmobility out, check back soon for some photos of Ely Cathedral.

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