The second in a series of regional Get Going Live! events, focusing on accessible motoring and independent mobility, has successfully taken place at the William Merritt Centre’s annual AccessAbility exhibition in Leeds in October.

The William Merritt Centre, based in Leeds and Sheffield, is one of twenty independent organisations offering professional information, advice and driving assessments for people seeking assistance with mobility. Supported and accredited by Driving Mobility, all centres are staffed by Occupational Therapists as well as approved driving instructors so that safety and driving solutions for individuals with injuries, disabilities or restricted mobility are maximised. As well as conducting assessments on behalf of the DVLA, Motability and healthcare professionals, Driving Mobility centres also accept self-referrals.

Previously a feature of the national Mobility Roadshow which closed in 2017, Get Going Live! relaunched for the first time in early October this year at the Queen Elizabeth’s Foundation for Disabled People (QEF), a Driving Mobility centre based in Carshalton.

The latest event Get Going Live! event at the William Merritt Centre, proved popular all day with many benefiting from free test drives and independent, professional advice. Teenagers, from the age of 14, were provided with unique opportunities to trial adapted vehicles for the first time, in safe surroundings, enabling vital preparations for future driving with a long-term condition or disability. Vehicle manufacturers showcased their latest products as part of the Get Going Live! feature and also within the AccessAbility exhibition itself, allowing event visitors to discover suitable options for assisted and independent motoring.

David Blythe, William Merritt Centre Manager, comments: “We are delighted that our annual AccessAbility exhibition, incorporating Get Going Live! has been so well attended by both visitors and exhibitors. The Get Going Live! feature offered our visitors fantastic opportunities to try adapted and accessible vehicles, accompanied by a specialist driving instructor. This unique experience allows end-users of all ages to make informative decisions regarding safer driving as well as vehicle purchasing and adaptations.”

The wider AccessAbility exhibition successfully showcased new and innovative assistive technology and equipment from leading specialist suppliers. A number of charities were in attendance providing one-to-one advice and information for disabled children and adults or those with additional needs. The exhibition also offered a special gaming area showcasing adaptations which enable access to computers, mobile phones, tablets, toys and computer games whilst providing an area to chill out and have fun. 

David Blythe concludes: “The Centenary Pavilion at Leeds United Football Ground has provided an amazing setting for a showcase of assistive products and services that enable people to live with greater independence. We wish to thank everyone involved in organising this rewarding event and look forward to a positive future for both the AccessAbility exhibition and Get Going Live! events.”

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