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Improving the health and well-being
of people living in East Yorkshire
and Northern Lincolnshire


British Red Cross – the Trustees have awarded £2000 for the Wheelchair Loan Service based in Hull. The Red Cross provides vital wheelchair loans across East Yorkshire to people who would otherwise have no means of mobility. When it is time to go home after a spell in hospital, the National Health Service will provide crutches to help an individual  get around. This can be painful and difficult. For a child, a parent or a grandparent recovering from an illness or an accident, this can mean a period of great difficulty in which leaving the house or simply moving around the house is impossible. Whilst the NHS is unable to provide wheelchairs on a short term basis, the Red Cross can step in to provide a service to people in desperate need of a wheelchair when leaving hospital. The Wheelchair Loans Services, based on Kingston Street, Hull, provides much-needed relief to individuals suffering from mobility problems. Referrals are received from GPs and hospitals to the service, however, the British Red Cross are frequently limited in the provision of wheelchairs due to aging stock and increased demand; as a result many people in Hull have faced a wait before they can help. The donation of £2,000 from Help for Health will provide 10 wheelchairs which will be put to use in the City of Hull, providing a potentially life-changing service. All the wheelchairs are bought with donations and the British Red Cross is replacing old and worn out equipment to help to give those that rely on the service something safe and usable.

  • In 2016 1,000 wheelchairs were out on loan to residents in Hull and the surrounding area.
  • In 2015, there were 62 referrals to the service from East Yorkshire Hospitals. In 2016 there were 95 referrals, a significant increase.
  • Last year the ages of those benefiting from the service in Yorkshire ranged from 8 to 102.
  • Every wheelchair will be used by an average of 12 people each year - a donation of £2,000 provides relief to 120 people a year in Hull experiencing  mobility problems and their families.
  • The British Red Cross provides 83,000 wheelchair loans each year in the UK. The volunteer-led service is the only one of its kind operating in the UK.
  • Every day, from Monday to Friday, there are two delivery vans on the road, operated by two part-time staff drivers and two volunteers. Its continuing success will enable anyone in Hull - irrespective of their circumstances - to have equal opportunity to a wheelchair.
  • Each loan costs the British Red Cross approximately £42 in operational costs - which includes servicing and checks each time one is returned. The older the wheelchair, the more it costs to maintain it for safe use.