The Mobility Roadshow, which has been providing opportunities for disabled and older people to find out about driving and other mobility options since 1983, is to close.
The decision has been taken by the Board of the Charity, Mobility Choice, which has run the event since 1998, in the light of falling exhibitor numbers over recent years.
In particular, the growth of the Motability One Big Day and other events, which many of the Mobility Roadshow exhibitors can attend free of charge, has had a significant impact on the viability of the Mobility Roadshow.
“Over the years, many thousands of disabled and older people have benefitted from the Mobility Roadshow, in particular from the ability to test drive a wide range of adapted vehicles in a safe off road environment. For many this has been the starting point on the road to independent mobility.
We are immensely sad that we have to close the event. We still believe that there are many disabled and older people, outside the remit of Motability, who need the unique opportunity we offered to find out if they are able to begin driving.
We are in discussion with Driving Mobility, the charity representing the UK’s mobility centres, and with Disability Driving Instructors, about opportunities for them to organise local events under our “Get Going Live!” banner which focusses on driving opportunities for young and newly disabled people.
We would like to say that we are enormously grateful to Motability for their generous sponsorship of the Mobility Roadshow and Get Going Live! events over the years, both in terms of financial support and the provision of vehicles for adapted test drives.”
Some responses to our announcement about closure of the Mobility Roadshow
“I just wanted to say how devastated my son is by this news. We have come to the last 3 roadshows and have enjoyed them so much, particularly the opportunity for my son to experience driving without a provisional licence. I hope you receive many more people voicing their concern and disappointment so that this event might continue."
Rachel Thomas, Cambridgeshire
“Very sorry to hear of the demise of the roadshow. I have attended the roadshow on a number occasions in various locations and have always found it enjoyable and informative. I wish you every success in your efforts to team up with other events.”
Chris Rowkins, East Sussex
“Oh Jacqui, how saad!... Well, it is clearly understandable, and hope it doesn't affect you people, you guys were brilliant. I shall miss all of you, and will always remember the experience I had with you, probably the only time in my life I shall ever enjoy such honorable Ambassadorial status, thanks to Mobility Roadshow. I wish to thank you for the opportunity, to both serve you and the general public at large, hoping Funding will be available in future in order to revive the roadshow again because. the idea was great to us all. Kind regards.”
Seth Thuita, West Midlands
“Many thanks for letting us all know your sad news, I for one will miss the opportunity to see many products displayed under one roof at one time which gave us the chance to make much needed decisions on what to purchase for our needs. It will be a big loss to the many disabled people who need the right information. I've only been to one show ( Telford ) but it was a great help to me on choosing a scooter hoist for my van and also seeing the many types of hand controls available that I might need in the future.”
Ian Walker, Shropshire
“Sorry to see the demise of the most practical and informative event in the calendar. Having attended thirty two of the thirty four shows I will sadly miss it, it was a fantastic place to meet up with like-minded people and share information and ideas. I agree with the reasons, and wonder if the PIP fiasco is also a major contributing factor as well as most car manufacturers jumping on the contract idea. It will leave a huge gap. Warm regards,”
Frank Adams, West Yorkshire
“For me this is a very sad day....I found the roadshows an integral part of my life... I found them useful... . Where do we go from here....??”
“I am very disappointed that you are no longer doing these shows. Being able to drive the different cars at the venue chosen has helped me in the past. Has the recent benefit cuts contributed to your decision?”
Vic Gerhardi, Aylesbury
“Thank you for the update on the Roadshows. It was really sad to read the news of no more shows. I had the pleasure of meeting you and the teams and wish you all the very best for the future. The Motability One Big Days were good but the number of cars was limited and they were often the same ones whereas your shows were excellent with lots more to drive and check out for suitability with aids and storage etc. Take care and keep in touch – valued and respected friend. ”
Steve Richardson, Warrington
“So sad news - been several times with my partner who is now deceased - he enjoyed the show and did not feel disabled - it gave him hope. Good luck - keep in touch.”
“Sorry you have had to close, enjoyed previous events, I think Telford was best show for me.”
Michael Dare, Birmingham
“I thank you and the Mobility Roadshow for the many years of fantastic and great information and advice that they have given hundreds of people who are not as agile as they would wish, it has shown them what can be done and what must be done for those of us who are not as mobile as we wish we were. It will be a great loss to the disabled community and their carers, god bless and keep you. In all humility,”
F.R. ALLEN, Carmarthenshire
“Thank you for the sad news that the Mobility Roadshow is to close which was sent to my husband Stephen Fisher who is ill and unable to reply.
I am replying on our behalf to say how sorry we are that the Mobility Roadshow is to close and to thank you all for the hard work and invaluable efforts that were undertaken to ensure that the Mobility Roadshow continued and the great success that it was. We enjoyed our visits to the Mobility Roadshow at several venues and will miss it. Our very best wishes and thanks to you all. ”
Catherine Fisher, Hereford
“A real shame, thanks & Good luck to all those involved.”
Jeremy Proctor, South Wales
“Just to say how sad I am at the demise of Mobility Roadshow. All mobility aids under one roof will probably never be repeated. Thanks for great roadshows over the years.”
Eddie Silk, Swindon
“I'm very sorry to read your email. I feel this is an end of an era. We stepped into the unknown launching Trekinetic with you guys, way back in 2006. Back then we had a fledgling website, with just six hundred hits on our counter. When we got back that evening after the show ended, we had accumulated 13,000. The Mobility Roadshow put us on the map and for that we will always be grateful. We wish you, Jacqui and everyone involved with the Roadshow and Mobility Choice, a well earned rest. Kind Regards,”
Mike Spindle - Managing Director Trekinetic All Terrain Limited
“Dear Ann and team; While not entirely unexpected, this is still very sad news. I’ve been working with the Roadshow since the days at Crowthorne in the early 2000’s, and have always found it to be a quite remarkable event. Thank you to you and all your team for all the work you have put in over the years. You should be very proud of the difference your show has made to people’s lives, it’s been a pleasure and a privilege to be involved. All best wishes for the future.”
Nigel Nigel Pointer (Ford)
“Hello Mobility Roadshow Team, Well Goodness Gracious! Just seen the notification about the Roadshow hitting the buffers. Sad News, especially for us who remember the Roadshow as a massive bustling/vibrating event, bringing so many possibilities to people with mobility impairment. Well done Roadshow – you played a blinder! Bob Appleyard Crash Engineer, Millbrook Thank you for providing the show. I found it helpful and informative and fully appreciate your decision.”
Melvin Hurley, Milton Keynes
“That's very sad, it was a great event.”
Christopher Jay, Enable Me, West Sussex
“I am very disappointed of the cancellation of the Mobility Roadshow for which I have been going for many years, I have picked up lots of help and information whilst there. The One Day shows are never as comprehensive and there are never as many exhibitors. I understand the reason is the exorbitant charges that the exhibitors have to pay. The exhibition venues are being very greedy and should consider “half a loaf being better than none”. If many exhibitors stop using them they may reduce their charges to get us back.
Many Thanks we do understand, and thank you for your e mail.”
John Russell, Buckingham
“Now that is tragic I feel that the one day shows seem to upset the cart. don’t know if I want to go to there shows. Very sorry to have your bit of news. Thank you for your efforts in the past yrs. God Bless. ”
Barry and Joan Smith
“This is sad news. I have attended the shows as long as I can remember. I am now 71, and was in a serious accident at 18 years old. Throughout my visits to the shows, I have met so many people like me who value the total help, advice, from the people involved in the shows. To all disabled, this is a loss that will take some time to digest.”
“Thank you for your email Very sad news that your excellent mobility roadshow is to close.”
Regards Nigel & Anita
“So frustrated that myself and my family didn't fully appreciate how good the Mobility Show was until fairly recently and now it’s gone. My daughter has had MS for 16 years and the information that was available was brilliant. It's sad to know that other people in similar situations will now have to work hard to find out as much as we did in one visit.”
Thank you so much Jacky, Cheshire
The Mobility Roadshow - meeting the nation's mobility needs since 1983