Disabilinet.com is a new social media community website specially designed for people with, or affected by disability, which delivers a content rich experience for all subscribers – www.disabilinet.com

Disabilinet.com is a new social media community website specially designed for people with, or affected by disability, which delivers a content rich experience for all subscribers – http://www.disabilinet.com

Developed by a team of disability specialists and pioneering online developers, Disabilinet.com is a new media-rich community website specifically designed for people and organisations associated with disability, to engage globally within a safe, social media environment.

The successful entrepreneur Mike Simmonds, who has extensive experience in the field of mobility and disability, originated the Disabilinet.com concept. He has brought together a team of developers to build this brand new community hub, which Mike intends to grow into the most popular portal for all individuals, groups and organisations associated with disability worldwide. As user numbers begin to grow, the site will develop organically to cater for popular trends and it is the intention of the founder that Disabilinet.com will become the platform to establish a foundation, which provides specialist assistance for people with acute mobility difficulties. As a charitable initiative and one of several mobility/disability related projects that Mike is leading, it is hoped that the Disabilinet Foundation will progress towards physically helping certain individuals through funds generated by online advertising revenue and donations. Several high profile disability-related organisations are supporting Disabilinet including The Mobility Roadshow, The English Federation of Disability Sport and the Spinal Injuries Association.

Mike explains: “Disabilinet.com is a fresh and original take on social media. We researched all the current online sites for people and organisations with an interest in disability and concluded there was a need for a different approach. Disabilinet.com has been specifically designed so that users can freely communicate with one another and share experiences in a safe and secure environment. Disabilinet.com is different to generic social media sites such as Facebook primarily through its specific content and user base. Relevant news, views and topics can be quickly accessed whilst new friendships can be formed safely as opposed to simply managing existing relationships online.”

“Disabilinet.com reflects a new genre of social media sites that engage specific interests and defined user groups. From my experiences and listening to people with disabilities, there is a real need to share images, advice and viewpoints as many find it difficult to discover the best way to improve well-being or access credible information. Whether people have become recently disabled, or continue to live with a medical condition, Disabilinet.com opens up a fantastic new world of opportunities out there through sharing stories and thoughts.”

Mike continues: “I am currently working alongside an outstanding team however we are looking for a General Manager to eventually direct the site and we would particularly welcome applications from people with disabilities, so I would encourage all suitable applicants to apply. On behalf of the Disabilinet.com team, we are all incredibly excited about this new launch and feel confident it will become the number one site for all people and organisations with an interest in disability to engage globally.”

Disabilinet.com is a content diverse community website which encompasses many levels of media from blogs and bulletin boards through to the latest relevant YouTube links, specific groups and user profiles. Each user or ‘friend’ has an individualised page, which can be tailored with images, details and ‘wall comments’ for fellow subscribers to access. Opportunities to share comments and visual material beyond Disabilinet.com are possible with Facebook, Twitter and Google+ links along with live chat ‘MSN style’ boxes and RSS feeds. Navigation is straightforward and simple with clear typography and character size can be increased for users that are partially sighted. Initially programmed in English, it is the intention of the Disabilinet.com team to roll out varying language versions, which will ultimately link across the world.

To join for free, visit: http://www.disabilinet.com

CELEBRATING 30 YEARS: Memories from Mobility Roadshow 2007 with Vicki Butler-Henderson

Mobility Roadshow 2007

19-21 July – Kemble Airfield, near Cirencester

VIP guests this year included:

  • Vicki Butler-Henderson, Fifth Gear presenter and broadcaster

  • Ade Adepitan, broadcaster and basketball star

  • Polly Vacher, record-holder for smallest aircraft to be flown solo around the world
  • The late Kerry McGregor, songwriter, actress and X-Factor finalist


Highlight features included:

  • The UK’s first Winnebago Ability Equipped Motorhome previewed by Nirvana Motorhomes.

  • B&Q chose the Roadshow to launch its Easy Living bathroom collection.

  • BskyB unveiled the UK’s first Easy Grip remote control for digital satellite with larger and bolder graphics for easier button identification
  • In the motoring arena was the first UK showing of the new Citroën C-Crosser 4×4 as well as new Picasso models; the new smart fortwo ahead of national launch; a new Openroad Peugeot Tepee MPV conversion from Constables and from Hill-Grau the first viewing of the Citroën Despatch new Combi with full European type approval.


Were you there? If so, we’d love to hear your memories of this event.


E: memories@mobilityroadshow.co.uk

Acquisition of the Abacus Healthcare brand strengthens Gainsborough product portfolio and Care in Bathing group

Picture caption: Care in Bathing has acquired the Abacus Healthcare brand to complement its leading portfolio of Gainsborough Specialist Bathing products. Pictured here: Gordon Farmiloe, Care in Bathing Group Managing Director (left) with Mike Gilsenan, former Managing Director and Founder of Abacus Healthcare (right).

Picture caption: Care in Bathing has acquired the Abacus Healthcare brand to complement its leading portfolio of Gainsborough Specialist Bathing products. Pictured here: Gordon Farmiloe, Care in Bathing Group Managing Director (left) with Mike Gilsenan, former Managing Director and Founder of Abacus Healthcare (right).

Gainsborough Specialist Bathing, the UK leader in the provision, installation and support of assistive baths and a division of the Care in Bathing group, is delighted to announce that the Abacus Healthcare brand has been integrated into the company to further enhance its portfolio of products for all care environments.

Abacus products will now be supplied by the Gainsborough Specialist Bathing division of Care in Bathing and will perfectly complement existing group brands that include Premier Care in Bathing and Bathing Solutions. With over 25 years of specialist knowledge focusing on bathing needs, Gainsborough Specialist Bathing is Europe’s leading choice for hi-lo powered and assistive baths. The Abacus brand will be combined with the highly respected Gainsborough range resulting in a broader and more comprehensive choice for care providers, hospitals, local authorities and healthcare professionals such as therapists and clinicians.

Since its inception in 1988, Abacus has a proven heritage across the community, care home and acute sectors with core competencies in paediatrics and learning disabilities. Hence it is the intention of Gainsborough Specialist Bathing to retain the brand whilst maintaining a seamless transition in terms of service and fulfilling all ongoing Abacus contracts.  Gainsborough’s tradition of excellence will continue and the amalgamation of Abacus products, expertise and market knowledge into the business will ensure that the changing needs of the modern care environment are met.

Gordon Farmiloe, Care in Bathing Group Managing Director comments: “As an international operation, we have extensive manufacturing resources both in the UK and US so are ideally positioned to continue production and development of the Abacus range. Our nationwide network of highly skilled service engineers will robustly support this new programme through a pro-active, professional approach to all installation and service requirements. The addition of the Abacus name to our offering will ensure that existing Gainsborough customers can benefit from an even wider and more diverse product range and valued relationships will continue to prosper. Equally, I am fully committed to supporting the associations and brand heritage that Abacus has created.”

The Abacus brand has been embraced in its entirety with operations and administration now managed as part of Care in Bathing and its Gainsborough Specialist Bathing division. To ensure the Abacus knowledge base is retained, Mike Gilsenan, former Managing Director and Founder of Abacus Healthcare, will be joining Care in Bathing. Mike has a valued standing in the industry and the calibre of his expertise is of the highest order in terms of assistive bathing.

The acquisition of the Abacus brand by the Care in Bathing group is equally beneficial for both of its customer bases in terms of access to a wider product range, larger nationwide service and maintenance network and improved R&D capabilities. The timing of this development is ideally placed to reflect the renewed pride in British manufacturing and reiterates Gainsborough Specialist Bathing’s commitment to UK designed and manufactured assistive baths. It will also ensure that Gainsborough remains at the forefront of assistive product innovation with solutions that are best in class.


WIN AN IPAD MINI! Send us your special Mobility Roadshow memories & photos for a chance to win!

WIN AN IPAD MINI! Send us your special Mobility Roadshow memories & photos for a chance to win!

WIN AN IPAD MINI! Send us your special Mobility Roadshow memories & photos for a chance to win!


WIN AN IPAD MINI! Send us your special Mobility Roadshow memories & photos for a chance to win! 

e: memories@mobilityroadshow.co.uk
w: http://www.mobilityroadshow.co.uk/page/memories

Were you at the very first show in 1983? What are yourpersonal highlights? Do you still have a piece of equipment purchased as a result of visiting that you simply can’t do without?

Share your details & photos with us and visit the website to read about others, such as Frank Adams who has attended every show since 1983!

All those whose memories are shared on the website will be automatically entered into a prize draw to win an iPad mini*, sponsored by Vauxhall Motability, who have also attended every Mobility Roadshow since 1983.

Get sharing and good luck!

* For full T&Cs, e: info@mobilityroadshow.co.uk


The new and pioneering Vita X mobility scooter from TGA delivers enhanced off road capabilities.

The new and pioneering Vita X mobility scooter from TGA delivers enhanced off road capabilities.


The UK’s leading mobility scooter specialist, TGA Mobility, is delighted to announce the introduction of the new and rugged 8mph Vita X, which delivers off-road capabilities to users who require independence in more challenging locations.

Building on the significant success of fellow Vita large and compact models, the Vita X is a highly robust and reliable mobility scooter with enhanced off-road capabilities. Engineered to deliver stability and safety even when tackling cross-country routes, this latest addition to the TGA range is perfect for individuals who either live in rural areas or require added performance on urban streets. The new Vita X is equipped with enhanced suspension that features double wishbone technology at the front and a mono shock absorber at the rear. Similar to the rest of the Vita range from TGA, it utilises revolutionary innovations from the motorcycle industry and encompasses a powerful motor, heavy-duty batteries for increased range and a technically advanced controller.

Daniel Stone, TGA Managing Director explains: “Accessibility for all will always been our focus here at TGA. Wherever individuals live with restricted mobility, it is our duty to ensure the TGA mobility scooter range provides reliable, safe and comfortable freedom with models to suit a variety of specific needs and locations. Rural settings can present a challenge for owners in regards to remaining independent outside of the home; hence we have developed and introduced the new Vita X. This outstanding, robust mobility scooter has been engineered to successfully negotiate uneven, off-road situations whilst still delivering around town manoeuvrability. We believe this latest addition to the TGA range further reiterates our pioneering approach to mobility scooter design.”

The new Vita X from TGA has an intuitive liquid crystal instrument console that clearly displays accurate real time information regarding speed, time, distance travelled, battery charge and temperature. Its pioneering LED lighting system provides enhanced visibility whilst using less power for improved battery life and range. The Vita X onboard computer delivers smooth ‘pull-aways’ / automatic braking and the emergency stopping system provides peace of mind for owners. The fully adjustable, leather racing seat offers day long comfort and the added benefit of extra lateral support for improved posture. The eye-catching black alloys and chunky tyres deliver an impressive 100mm (4″) ground clearance that is ideal for negotiating off road terrain on a regular basis.

Exclusively available as the sporty black Edition with striking red flashes, the Vita X incorporates market-leading features such as:

– 25 stone user weight capacity, 8mph top speed and 25 mile range

– Upgraded performance with heavy duty batteries, anti-tip wheels and emergency braking system

– Cutting edge styling, exclusively available in black

– Adjustable, ergonomic tiller with Delta handlebars

– Robust, high-grip pneumatic off-road tyres and strengthened alloy wheels

– Fully adjustable racing leather seat, rear storage pocket and carrying bracket

– Highly visible, tinted LED head lights, indicators and hazard warning lights

– Intelligent, energy saving mode


For further details, visit:   www.tgamobility.co.uk

Mobility Roadshow competition: Young writers demonstrate sensitivity to disability and bullying

The winners of a national writing competition for young people have demonstrated an outstanding depth of emotion and caring concern for people with disabilities.

 8 January 2013 – The winners of a national writing competition for young people have demonstrated an outstanding depth of emotion and caring concern for people with disabilities.

School children aged 7 to 16 years were invited by the charity Mobility Choice to enter its Ready Willing & Mobile competition with short stories of no more than 500 words featuring a young disabled person as the central character. This represented a new brief after seven successful years when the competition rewarded bright ideas that would enhance the lives of young disabled people.

The winners are:

Age category 10 to 12: Julia Marcheson (12), Pennthorpe School, Rudgwick, West Sussex

Age category 7 to 9: Holly Whitaker (9), Lightcliffe C.E.Primary School, Lightcliffe, Halifax

“Fiction literature rarely features people with disabilities,” said Jacqui Jones, Chief Executive of Mobility Choice. “Our charity aims to turn that around by encouraging young people to think about disability and inclusivity from an early age.”

Julia Marcheson, won with ‘Never too late’, her story about Leo, a young boy with learning difficulties whose mother dies following a gang assault on him and his friends. Leo soon gains a winning goal on the basketball court, demonstrating that in life it is never too late to triumph over adversity. “Julia’s entry stood out; she really showed outstanding depth of emotion,” said David Proud, actor and member of the judging panel.

Holly Whittaker impressed the judges with her understanding of the need to support friends who are being bullied as a result of their disability. Throughout her story entitled ‘Amber’ – a young classmate with dwarfism – she demonstrated a highly intuitive caring attitude to life and that when young friends are supported they are indeed winners.

“I am always delighted to see how children use their imagination to interpret themes,” said Geoff Adams-Spink, disability consultant and broadcaster.

Both winners received a set of eight Puffin Classics hardback folio editions and a Warner Brothers’ Harry Potter tour for four people. For their schools they won £500 towards equipment or projects and £150-worth of STAEDTLER art and craft materials.

Ready Willing & Mobile 2012 was supported by DisabledGo, Penguin, Phab Kids!, STAEDTLER, The Open University and Whizz-Kidz.

About Mobility Choice

Mobility Choice is the national registered charity dedicated to raising awareness of mobility and independent living options among people with disabilities and older people for whom a little help to get about will enhance their lifestyle options.

The charity organises the annual Mobility Roadshow www.mobilityroadshow.co.uk which this year celebrates its 30th Anniversary; Get Going Live! driving days for young disabled people who are about to embark on their driving career and hosts the Mobility Choice Motoring www.mobilitychoicemotoring.co.uk to provide a broad spectrum of motoring news.

Mobility is not just about driving. It’s about vehicle conversions, motoring accessories, wheelchairs and power chairs, scooters and cycles, fitness and home products, accessible holidays and leisure, sport and other leisure pursuits. The Mobility Choice website www.mobilitychoice.org.uk provides a useful centre of information on all things mobility.


: Keith Forman from Lincoln, who has completed an impressive 3,000 miles on his TGA Breeze S3 mobility scooter in just 12 months

Keith Forman from Lincoln, who has completed an impressive 3,000 miles on his TGA Breeze S3 mobility scooter in just 12 months

Keith Forman, 55 from Lincoln, is a remarkable character that despite living with severe disability, completed 3,000 miles on his TGA Breeze mobility scooter this New Year by travelling around Lincolnshire during 2012.

Keith has lived locally for over 30 years and has been disabled since the age of 11 due to the effects of having a brain tumour removed. Following a lengthy stay in a Sheffield hospital he returned to Tetney to rebuild his life with his parents and Brother. However in 1979 Keith discovered that part of the original tumour had not been removed and had to undergo surgery again which eventually proved successful. Now stable but living with severely restricted mobility and paralysis on one side of his body, Keith uses a TGA Breeze S3 mobility scooter to remain mobile outside of his home thanks to the Motability leasing scheme. Motability continues to grow in popularity across the UK as it allows individuals to simply turning part, or all, of their Disability Living Allowance into the TGA mobility scooter of choice.

Even though Keith’s mobility issues unfortunately prevented him from entering employment, he was determined to support society through volunteering for local organisations such as Lincolnshire Dial-a-Ride and assisting with Shop Mobility. Keith was the Dial-a-Ride Vice Chair for several years until his disability became more restrictive, however he still remains a member of the committee and passionately dedicated to assisting individuals with mobility issues. He has been a keen photographer for over 20 years and regularly captures picturesque and interesting scenes from Lincolnshire whilst travelling on his mobility scooter.

The Breeze S3 mobility scooter Keith proudly rides most days around Lincolnshire is the second TGA model he has owned. Since taking delivery of it 12 months from Eden Mobility, he has accrued an impressive 3,000 miles navigating the lanes and by-ways of the local county with a focus on the scenic waterscapes north west of Lincoln. Keith explains: “I take great delight in exploring the local area and you can discover me most days in the middle of a cross country expedition on my TGA Breeze mobility scooter. I have learnt fantastic map reading skills over the past 12 months and couldn’t believe my mile-o-meter when I looked down and saw I had travelled over 3,000 miles! Despite my disability becoming more pronounced each year, I am absolutely determined to continue with my adventures for as long as possible and plan to increase my daily mileage even further. If you find yourself in a similar situation to me in terms of health problems and I really hope you don’t, I firstly would say never lose faith in your own abilities and never let anyone tell you that you can’t do anything!”

Keith continues: “My TGA Breeze is such a robust piece of kit and has never let me down once during these 3,000 miles which is so important as I regularly travel up to 20 miles from my home. The great feature about the Breeze is its impressive range on one single battery charge, which give me peace of mind when I am in the middle of nowhere. It is fantastic to know I can travel up to 30 miles without any problems when using heavy-duty batteries. As I only have movement on one side, my Breeze was specially adapted so that the left hand controls could be used on their own to operate the scooter safely. Hence, my Breeze has not only been my saviour for practical necessities such as shopping etc., but my gateway to so many fun things in life which would have otherwise be barred from me.”

The Breeze brand from TGA has an established and respected reputation for providing exceptional reliability, comfort and build quality. Both the latest three and four-wheel 12km/h (8mph) Breeze S3 and S4 models continue this superb heritage with the additional of several new features. The rear transaxle motor delivers all the power and performance expected from a TGA model that was clearly demonstrated during its appearance on the 2012 BBC Top Gear extreme mobility scooter challenge.