Robyn was introduced to me by Andrea who I previously chatted to about cycling and scooting around Whitehill and Bordon.  As a keen rider, I had previously been seeking out cyclists to chat to about cycling in our local area.  Robyn however is not a cyclist!

Robyn uses a mobility scooter to get around.  The following chat was a fascinating insight into how someone that has mobility issues navigates their way around Whitehill and Bordon.

Would you say that the new infrastructure helps you get around town?

Yes! the new infrastructure has made most places accessible – the exception is the Deadwater Valley as my mobility scooter won’t fit through the gates.

Why do you choose to travel on a mobility scooter rather than driving?

The cycle paths have opened up the area so I can now go further and explore places that a car can’t get to. I can choose many more routes to get to the shops or The Shed, which makes the journey a fun and interesting part of my day.    This gives me a great sense of pleasure and freedom.  I can socialise more.  The new path along the A325 has helped as it is wide enough for my mobility scooter and friends to walk beside me.  I have met so many people on my journeys and this is very important for my mental health.   The mobility Scooter is great tool for short journeys, and of course I am not using petrol or adding wear and tear to the car.  I am out in the fresh air, seeing sights that I wouldn’t see in the car.

How far do you travel on your mobility scooter?

Around 15 miles during the week.

What is your battery range?

Around 21 miles.

Are there any improvements that could be made to aid your traveling around the local area?

Yes – Drop curbs; There needs to be more of them, and they need to be flat to the road – a lot are still too high making it uncomfortable or impossible to use safely. The bump up or down the kerb can give a very painful jolt.   Footpaths are not always cleared and become overgrown which impedes safe passage, some paths need repairing.  The gates into green spaces aren’t helpful – I can generally negotiate them with help from a friend, but some mobility scooter users may not be able to, if out alone. Generally, I am out and about a lot, so have figured out how to get around Bordon and which routes to use.

Would you recommend other mobility scooter users – use the new infrastructure?

Yes, I would! The new infrastructure has opened the town and made it much more accessible.  It is important that people with mobility restrictions don’t feel locked in their homes and that they can enjoy their surroundings either alone or with friends.  Also, with the addition of the activity choice – ‘wheels’ in the BetterPoints App – , we can also earn points to redeem for vouchers as we travel around the area.