Cycling project: Fresh air and friendship

Cycle rides and care homes aren’t two things which you would naturally associate together but, thanks to our fantastic trishaw, residents and day guests are now able to rediscover all the fun and freedom of cycling with companionship.

This is affiliated with the ‘Cycling without Age’ initiative, a social enterprise which has helped set up similar projects across Europe, founded in Copenhagen in 2012. We are hugely grateful that local company Signal who instigated the project, purchased the specialised ‘trishaw’ and donated it to our charity, Lilian Faithfull Care.  Our team of fantastic volunteers and staff pedal the ‘trishaw’ along the traffic-free picturesque Honeybourne Line or around Montpellier Park in Cheltenham.

As the only Trishaw in the county, the charity offers anyone in the six homes and two day hubs the opportunity to enjoy a cycle ride (those not adjacent to the safe cycle routes are transported over).   An appropriately trained member of staff is on each trip, who is either riding the trishaw or sharing the ride with the resident or day guests.  The trishaw has comfortable seat, with seat belts, for two passengers.  The cycle rides don’t go much faster than a walking pace which ensures comfort and maximises the opportunities to spot things and talk along the way.

Martin DeGroodt, Physiotherapist at Faithfull House is one of the team that rides the trishaw each week;  “It always gives people a real boost.  It is stimulating out in the fresh air and there is always a lot of interaction with other people when we are out riding.”

The resident’s and day guests always give such positive feedback after a ride;

“Thank you so much, you can do that anytime you like!” Lettie, Faithfull House
I felt like the Queen!  It was wonderful! I saw bits of Cheltenham I’ve never seen before!” Olive, Astell House
It was enjoyable, an old man of 93 with two young ladies, it beats everything doesn’t it!” John, Bay Tree Court

 

Fun, Freedom and Fresh Air!

Cheltenham Borough Council have given their full support to the project ensuring access for the trishaw along the Honeybourne Line, Mike Redman, Director of Environment at CBC comments;

“We are delighted to have been able to support this fantastic health and wellbeing initiative, which will make a real difference to the quality of life of local care home residents, whilst supporting our aim of promoting more physical activity across the age spectrum”.