BAT MEN - CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF THE BAT BUS
It is twenty years now that the community ‘BAT’ bus has been taking those who are disabled or have problems with mobility, to get out more and make friends. To celebrate this milestone the BAT drivers are living up to their name and spending the day as the superhero BATMAN.
No one is quite sure how the BAT bus name came about, but the rumour is that it is because BATMAN is rescuing people from loneliness.
Every week the SEDCATs Community ‘BAT’ bus takes out Bournemouth residents on day-trips and lunch outings and trips to Boscombe and Castlepoint Shopping Centre. The trips to local centres are run twice a week and clients are returned home by 1pm. Wednesday lunch outings offer a chance for more interaction with others on the bus and they go to popular places including Poole Quay, Hengistbury Head and New Forest pubs.
BAT BUS driver Nick said “It’s great to see clients laughing and having a joke with each other, I like to tease them a bit too! Our regulars take each other’s phone numbers and usually chat in between going on outings and keep each other informed about all the comings and goings.”
You may wonder why this service is needed, but there are over 58 000 people living in Bournemouth aged 70 or older or consider themselves limited by a disability. Often, due to lack of mobility, usually walking problems, these users find it very difficult (in many cases impossible) to access public transport as they cannot walk to the bus stop. Without the help our services, people with mobility problems become reluctant to leave their homes, frightened of falling over and anxious about the environment as well as very lonely and isolated.
Jean Cox who has been a member for 15 years says “I wouldn’t know what to without the BUS bus and the lovely BAT drivers – they are real heroes and without them and the bus I’d be lost and I’d never be able to get out. I use the BAT bus to come shopping twice a week and I really enjoy going on the outings as well”
Many people who feel lonely or who would just like to make some new friends may benefit from a full-day Saturday outing where you have plenty of time to get to know the others on the BAT bus and usually include a lunch at a good local pub or café and maybe a farm shop stop and a scenic tour as part of the day. Venues such as Corfe Castle and Cranbourne Chase have been highly rated destinations for our full-day trips and we are always open to ideas and recommendations for possible trips from our clients.
The service picks up people from their own homes takes them to the venues and returns them straight back to their door. Our BAT drivers are very kind and considerate and will help our clients on and off the buses and with their shopping.
From the local charity Sedcat (South East Dorset (including Bournemouth ) Accessible Transport) BAT BUS Driver Alan said “We realise that people want to try out an outing before joining and to celebrate 20 years of the BAT bus we are offering a trial run on ANY BAT bus trip without having to become a member. So if you have problems with mobility, just call us and see where we are going and come and make new friends.”
Call 01202 399771 between 10 am and 2pm for more details.
Normally BAT bus clients join as members (£10 per year) but from today you can try out a BAT bus outing at just the trip price. Castlepoint and Boscombe £5; half-day outings £6, and full-day outings being £9.
Can You show your support for Community Transport?
Community Transport makes around 15 million journeys a year in the UK helping the most disadvantaged people in the community and is a valuable and unique community asset.
A recent legal decision made by the Department of Transport has the potential to jeopardise this good work by changing the way that CT works.
Community Transport Operators around the country often take on small contracts awarded by their Local Authorities using their Section 19 permits. This provides valuable funding for other projects which is then re-invested directly back into low cost services which help the community and provide excellent ‘social value’.
This has worked well for many years but this way of working is under threat and potentially this could see the withdrawal of some services leaving communities without short of accessible transport.
The Community Transport Association has organised a petition to the Department of Transport which you can find by clicking here https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/save-community-transport
or Facebook https://www.facebook.com/sedcatcomtrans.
Please show your support by going to the page and clicking on the link which will take you to the petition.
A successful bid for sedcat is very good news for our members
We were absolutely delighted to win an award of £19738 from the ' People's Postcode Trust ' to fund our project 'Mobility Matters' which aims to improve the provision of accessible transport in the area. We have purchased another accessible vehicle and we hope to have an update on the launch very soon.
Vote for our 'Hospital Hopper' project in the Aviva Community Fund competition until 18th November;https://community-fund.aviva.co.uk/voting/project/view/16-1667
THE BIG GIVE XMAS APPEAL 2016
Can you help us get a new service off the ground?
This year we are taking part in THE BIG GIVE XMAS challenge to raise funds for a new service to provide transport to get people to hospital appointments. At the moment this is not something that we do but we know that there is a need for it in this area. We do not currently have the resources within the services at the moment but we are trying to put together a service which is affordable and accessible.
We are asking supporters if they are prepared to pledge a amount of £50.00 - £100 which will be collected in early December, The campaign will then go online in December to raise further funds. All pledges must be made through the link http://secure.thebiggive.org.uk/pledge/southeastdorsetcommunityaccessibletransport
The deadline will be extended to 7th September 2016
Ten Tips to control your money from Fleur Perry at bit.ly/29BqdDe
Castlepoint Shopmobility - Saturday service
Unfortunately due to declining numbers of Saturday users at Castlepoint Shopmobility a decision was made in the early part of last year to close Saturdays making savings which could be used elsewhere where demand was greater. As a charity our resources are limited and it was with regret that we felt we had to made this decision to protect other services.
Arrangements were put into place with Castlepoint Management to allow pre-booked equipment to be collected from the security office at the Management Suite on Aisle 8 on Saturdays. The office is open from 9.00am until late.
Castlepoint Shopping Centre keep 2 wheelchairs which can be loaned out on a first come, first served basis for visitors to the Centre. Sainsbury and Asda stores have scooters which can be used by their shoppers.
We apologise to anyone who has been inconvenienced by this decision and we would urge people to book ahead to avoid disappointment.
How you can make use of the SEDCAT community car schemes bit.ly/22oaDtR
Do you need help using the internet to plan travel bit.ly/1PrekZ
Government crackdown on unattended roadworks
Utility workers on A roads must work 7 days a week or remove the road works on Friday according to new legislation.
Any job that takes 5 days or less must be done during the week.
Motorway road works must be less than 10 miles long (someone should point out the M3 that has been going on for years)
Speed limits through motorway road works to be increased from 50 mph to 60 mph.
Read the full story at Disability Motoring UK bit.ly/1Yps1zY (picture source Disabled Motoring UK)
Firefighters in Manchester rescue an elderly woman from floods in a wheelie bin. Read about the rescue in the Manchester Evening News bit.ly/1S3Mm6k
Could the average person manage a day in a wheelchair? Read about what happened when solicitor Raquel Siganporia challenged her colleagues to do it bit.ly/1UD2m0G
Some more photos from our fundraising day at Castlepoint on 4th June with Dorset troopers.
Fundraising at Castlepoint with the lovely Dorset Troopers (they're not as scary as they look!)
The Troopers helped us raise a fantastic £554.27 owards our replacement bus. Thank you to all who took part.
Do you enjoy Sedcat days out?
Perhaps want to do some more trips or go a bit further Discover Dorset do lots of sightseeing tours from Bournemouth
Calling all Trekkies! Dorset Troopers beaming down to Castlepoint on Saturday 4th June between 11 to 3
How 'assistive technology' can make life that little bit easier.
From mobile phones you operate with head movements to self tyng shoelaces, here's some assistive technology that's available now bit.ly/1TGnF44
Learning through life...
Future Learn provides hundreds of free courses from top universities and specialist organisations on a whole range of topics.
Olive Oil Times article... Med diet reduces heart disease and stroke risk
Research published in the Olive Oil Times shows that a Mediterranean diet reduces risk of heart disease and stroke but that Western diet does not increase risk.
New service for rural areas of Wimborne launching Saturday May 28th! Bookings being taken now
Taxi battles over wheelchair journeys in London
Every now and again SWT offers cheap day returns to London. During April there was an offer of a £15 return ticket for example. Southwest Trains, but not all stations, are accessible by wheel chair and getting to and from London should be reasonable but what happens when you get there?
In theory you can use a bus and if you have a National Bus Pass the travel will be free. I use the bus every time I go to London now and find it the best way to get around but you have to get the hang of it and this can be a bit daunting. Every London bus route is ‘wheelchair accessible’, In theory at least. In practise it is pretty much impossible to use a wheelchair on London buses during the rush hour period.
Good advice on getting around London can be found at the Transport for London site here. If you live in London you can even get advice from a mentor. It’s clear that Transport for London is trying hard. You can find accessible underground stations in advance and plan your journey before you set off. I do this as a matter of routine now, even planning bus links and journeys in advance when I go abroad. Give us a call if you need help to do this.
If you can afford the fare you might take a taxi. All London black cabs can take wheelchairs but most charge extra. Research by the Department of Transport shows that two out of every three wheelchair users are charged extra for a taxi journey in London.
See the article ‘Mind the Gap’ by David Atkinson, CEO of Scope about disability transport in London.
You might have heard of the newish taxi company called Uber (Uber’s London website) they are now active in six British cities. The London Black cabs launched a major demonstration against Uber, completely blocking Whitehall in one protest.
This isn’t an article in favour of Uber, for one thing most Uber drivers use a Toyota Prius which does not take a non collapsible wheelchair. Uber have introduced ‘Uberassist’. Uber assist is an app designed to help seniors and disabled people, including people with non folding wheelchairs. Uber’s best London drivers are being specially trained to help people with disabilities. User assist puts a disabled person directly in touch with one of these drivers.
Reports about the training are good but I don’t know anyone who has used this service. If you are travelling to London and want to try Uberassist or get information from Transport for London the plan your journey and you are not sure about how to do it, give us a call and we’ll fix a time to help you at shopmobility Castlepoint.
Walking and cycling are good for your health even when air pollution is high.
There are pockets in Poole and Bournemouth near major roads where air pollution drifts above acceptable levels. A friend of mine for example was going through the ‘stop smoking program’. The pharmacist at the medical centre who was checking his progress wouldn’t believe that he had stopped because the carbon monoxide in his blood was the same as a heavy smoker. It turned out this was because he was cycling alongside a busy road before the test.
You can smell the scent of diesel fumes that is not unlike a barbecue smell in areas near to busy roads in the town. Particularly in cold still weather.
Air pollution in cities is one of the leading risk factors to health. The Royal Colleges of Physicians and Paediatrics both say that it contributes to about 40 000 deaths a year.
Researchers at the Centre for Diet and Activity Research (CEDAR) at Cambridge University looked into the effects of exercise in areas of high air pollution in London.
Dr Marko Taino who led the research team found that the benefits of exercise such as walking and cycling always outweigh the negative effects of air pollution. Only about 1% of the world’s cities are so polluted that exercise actually becomes more dangerous. A cyclist in Delhi, one of the most polluted cities in the world for example (10 times more polluted than London), would have to cycle for over 5 hours before the effects of pollution began to outweigh the effects of exercise.
Dr James Woodcock, also from CEDAR warns that, “Whilst this research demonstrates the benefits of physical activity in spite of air quality, it is not an argument for inaction in combating air pollution.”
He goes on to argue that it supports investment in ‘active exercise’ in our towns and cities.
The research cautions that their model does not take into account any physical condition or health problems a person may have. Check with your doctor if in doubt about fitness levels.
On a personal note as an older person, I walk up to four miles to the supermarket along busy roads and catch a bus back. And sometimes cycle even further to the shops although I avoid the busy roads because I think they are too dangerous to cycle on.
Has anyone got any stories of how to get ‘active exercise’ or the effects of air pollution?
More detail on the research is available at http://bit.ly/1NYP6GN
Graham Poulloin (Former lecturer and social marketing researcher at Bournemouth University)
What is hospital patient transport in Dorset like? bit.ly/1Nkl6j8
What is section 19 and 22 community transport? bit.ly/1S0KZXe
Sedcat community bus to replace the withdrawn Damory 88 bus in Wimborne bit.ly/1VMNsck
The Dorset Storm Troopers will be at Castlepoint on 4th June helping us fundraise. Come and have your photo taken with Darth Vader and his troopers if you dare!!
We now have an appeals page on Localgiving where you can donate to our cause and help more people benefit from our services. To donate please click on the link below or cut and paste to take you to our page where you can make a donation.
Sponsored Walk Sunday 26th June 2016
Come and join us for a sponsored walk starting at Boscombe Pier to Bournemouth Pier (approx 5km) to raise funds. We need an additional bus which will provide services to isolated communities in Dorset following severe cuts to local transport.
Entry costs £5.00 and sponsor forms can be obtained by emailing: - firstname.lastname@example.org or by phoning us on 01202 598295 0r 01202 399700
Wednesday 16th December 2015
We are taking the Bat Bus to Winchester market for the day; come and join us to find those unique Xmas gifts and craft items in the lovely market town of Winchester. Shopmobility facilities available in the Town Centre and you will be able to use your sedcat Wessex membership.
December 2015 New bus for
We have had a number of difficulties this year with our loaned buses which have prompted us to look at how we need to improve our fleet. The 2 blue side-loading Optares have been off the road and sadly one of them has now been withdrawn from service. This left us with problems running the service after issues with accessibility and reliability of buses which were available to us. The outings were temporarily suspended for a period of time because of Health and Safety concerns but I am very pleased to report that our popular outings are up and running again. A new list of outings is available for members and two extra seasonal trips have been added this month.
The popular blue BAT bus is currently
being repaired and we hope to see it back very soon.
An opportunity has recently arisen for us to purchase a second hand Renault Master with a back loading hydraulic ramp which has been used by another Community Transport in Kent. Although it does not have the side opening, no step access, of the blue bus we feel that it offers good accessibility from the rear of the bus, great value and we like the fairly simple mechanics of the model, with less reasons for breaking down!
We are busy fundraising for the purchase of the bus and so far we have raised around £2,000 towards the cost of £10,800. A very big thank you goes to the lovely members of The Tuesday Luncheon Club who recently presented us with a cheque for £500 and a further £340 from Waitrose in Winton. Thank you as well to all our members who have purchased mugs, raffle tickets, knitted items and generally supported us throughout the year. A legacy from the estate of Mrs Sheila Tisley, who was a regular user of the services and particularly loved the outings, was a very thoughtful and helpful gesture towards our appeal.
Legacies can be made to sedcat and we will be happy to help with making any arrangements. Donations play an important part in helping to keep the services running in the future and safeguarding the service for those most in need within the community.
Mayor launches new fully accessible MPV to help Wheelchair Travellers in Bournemouth
A new vehicle has been launched by the Mayor of Bournemouth, Cllr Christopher Mayne, for wheelchair travelling passengers living in the town who need to get out and about in the community but can only leave their homes by means of an accessible taxi. The fully accessible Peugeot MPV has been purchased by sedcat for the use of members who can only travel in a wheelchair. sedcat has added their first accessible MPV to their fleet of mini-buses.
The MPV has been specially adapted to carry wheelchairs, either powered and manual, and will be driven by fully trainedVolunteer drivers from the sedcat Volunteer Community Car Scheme. Any sedcat member who needs to travel in a wheelchair can now do so in comfort and style; a Volunteer diver will collect them from their home and take them to wherever they need to go. The new vehicle will be parked in a safe and secure compound at the Castlepoint Shopping Park with its own reserved parking space.
The car has been funded through the generosity of local charitable trusts, including the Talbot Village Trust, and fundraising events which have been run by sedcat during the past two years; starting with a Sponsored Cycle Ride to Sardinia in 2012.
"sedcat provides a vital service to the community and enables people who wouldn't normally be able to use public transport to get out and about rather than being trapped in their homes", said Katie Cox from the Talbot Village Trust, "the new vehicle will allow them to help even more people who need to travel in a wheelchair and unable to use the Community Car Scheme and we think it will be invaluable in giving individuals and their families that all import independence and freedom."
There will be a charge to use the MPV, to cover the running costs of this service. Please go to our services for more information.
The BAT Bus stretches out into the local community to help local residents of Bournemouth who have been affected by some of the bus routes which have recently been terminated.
sedcat are pleased to announce three new services for the BAT Bus, operating in the Bournemouth area, which they hope will help members who have been affected by the recent termination of some bus routes in Bournemouth.
New weekly Bus service to Winton Town Centre starting Wednesday 30th April 2014
The BAT Bus will collect members from their homes in Talbot Village, Ensbury Park, East Howe, Hillview, Redhill and Moordown, within a zoned area.
The Bus will call at Waitrose and near to Iceland in Winton.
Return fare: £5.00
New weekly Bus service to Westbourne Town Centre starting Monday 28th April 2014
The BAT Bus will collect members from their homes along the East Cliff, Bournemouth Central, West Cliff, Westbourne as far as Canford Cliffs Road and within a zoned area running from Bourne Valley Road to Branksome Wood Road.
The bus will call at Marks and Spencer in Westbourne
Return fare: £5.00
New monthly Bus service to Wimborne starting Friday 2nd May 2014
The BAT Bus will collect members from their homes in Northbourne, Kinson, West Howe, Bear Cross, Bearwood, Canford Magna and Merley within a zoned area.
The bus will call at Wimborne market, Waitrose and Wimborne Town Centre.
Return fare: £5.00
"Community Transport - reaching out into the local community to help those with real transport needs"
For more details and eligibility to use any of these new services, please telephone the sedcat booking line on 01202 399700 or email email@example.com
sedcat take Shopmobility to Bournemouth Town Centre
on Saturday 21st December 2013
Shopmobility was available all day from 10.00 am to 4 pm helping anyone with mobility problems who needed to visit the shops for their Christmas shopping. Scooters and wheelchairs were available at the Glen Fern car park (see map below). Visitors looked out for the blue BAT Bus which was parked up in the car park with scooters and wheelchairs for hire. Shopmobility staff were on hand to offer help and assistance.
For anyone with mobility difficulties getting around Bournemouth Town Centre can be a huge problem, for a short time only Shopmobility gave people the opportunity to do some last minute shopping.
The Glen Fern car park has two disabled parking bays and reasonably priced parking charges. The car park is located in Glen Fern Road and is convenient for Old Christchurch Road and Town Centre shops, bars and restaurants; you can also easily access the Gardens. Post code for Sat Nav use is BH1 2LZ.
sedcat on the beach - Summer 2013
sedcat organised a weekend down at Boscombe beach during June and took a selection of mobility equipment to help visitors and residents of Bournemouth access the seafront. sedcat understand how difficult it is for many people with mobility difficulties to enjoy the simple pleasures of going down to the beach. Fortunately, the sun kept shining and the rain held off.
Malcom and Margaret Humphriss (left), members of Castlepoint shopmobility, switched their afternoon visit to the shopping center to come down to the beach. They spent the afternoon happily cruising about along the promenade enjoying the holiday atmosphere on the beach "much more fun than shopping!" commented Malcom.
Barbara Carpenter (right), a long standing member of the Boscombe Shopmobility took advantage of the sunshine and went down to the beach with her two grand-daughters "Being able to come down to the seafront and use a scooter has given me the oppurtunity of bringing my grand-daughters down to the beach. Not only have the girls been able to play on the beach under my watchful eye, I can sit close by and enjoy the scenery and the sunshine, what a treat!" said Barbara.
ASDA 'Chosen by you - Given by us' instore collections held at the Castlepoint ASDA store
sedcat are grateful for the continued local support shown by their local ASDA store at Castlepoint Shopping Park for including them in the recent 'Green Token Charity Scheme'. Although sedcat did not finish as overall winner they still qualified for a cheque for £50, which was presented by Dennis Godfrey, Events Manager at the Castlepoint ASDA store.
A 'Donations' box on behalf of sedcat is also available at Customer Services in the Castlepoint ASDA store.
Cycle to Sardinia - September 2012
Teenagers helping to raise money for a new community BAT Bus
It's not often you hear about two sixteen year olds who are giving up part of their summer holidays to cycle all the way from Bournemouth to Sardinia to raise money to help a local charity; but this is what Will Nurse from New Milton and Paul Rickard from Poole are planning. The boys will be leading a group of 8 cyclist who will be setting off from the Castlepoint Shopmobility unit in Bournemouth on the 2nd August 2012. In the group there will be three 16yr olds, one 17yr old and four adults who will accompany the boys solely as back up.
Will and Paul chose the BAT Bus as the charity they wished to support. Will's grandmother, Margaret Nurse, has been a member for many years and uses the bus for her shopping and also enjoys many of the outings. Margaret's mobility is so poor that she is now confined to a powered wheelchair; without the BAT Bus calling for Margaret it is unlikely that she would be able to leave her home and continue to lead an independent life. It is for this reason that Will is keen to support our fundraising efforts to buy another badly needed community BAT Bus.
If you are reading this and thinking that you would like to sponsor the Cycle Ride to Sardinia, please visit the boy's website www.cycletosardinia.co.uk where you can leave a donation.
If you would like to help with our fundraising efforts to buy a new community BAT bus we would love to hear from you; perhaps you would like to run your own fundraising event (bring home baked cakes into work to sell at coffee time : shave off a colleague's moustache : have a sponsored slim or run a marathon), all in support of our 'Raising money for a new community BAT Bus fund'
Paul and Will getting ready for the 2nd August departure
ASDA community board at Castlepoint
A big thankyou to ASDA at Castlepoint Shopping Park for featuring 'the BAT Bus' 'Community Cars' and 'Shopmobility' in three of their CHOSEN BY YOU collection boxes. Green tokens were handed out to shoppers who then decided which charity collection box to put their token into. The tokens are still being counted for the Shopmobility collection so please, if any of you are reading this and shop in ASDA, remember to put your token into our box.
Although The BAT Bus and Community Cars token collections did not win we still received a cheque from ASDA which will go towards our'Raising money for a new community BAT Bus' fund
Mayor's Volunteer and Volunteer Group of the Year Awards 2012 : Runner up Diana Brocklehurst
We were delighted to hear that Diana (one of our Community Cars Drivers) was awarded the 'Runner Up' Award from the Mayor at the recent award's ceremony. For over 4 years Diana has been a volunteer community car driver for sedcat and a volunteer wheelchair-pusher for the BAT Bus collecting Marjorie, one of the BAT Bus ladies, and taking her shopping in ASDA. Not only does she volunteer for sedcat, she also helps at the Talking Newspapers editing, reading and general secretarial duties. Diana gives up half of her week volunteering and over 200 people benefit; she more than deserves her award.
Diana receives her award from the Mayor