Added on Dec 11, 2007 - 10:39am
A Shopmobility service for Birmingham was first visualised by the Access Committee for Birmingham in the year 1996. They then proceeded to put together a bid to the National Lottery, for funding to help start the scheme. In December 1996 we were awarded a grant from the Lottery. Birmingham City Council also contributed with funding which enabled the idea to turn into reality. Birmingham Shopmobility has been operating since 1998.
We first opened for a period of about eighteen months from Birmingham Central Library, whilst a permanent site at Snow Hill Railway Station was being developed. The permanent move to Snow Hill was completed in June 2000.
After the first opening at Snowhill, a “New Bullring” shopping complex was on the Birmingham Cities drawing board. Again the Access Committee thought it could give an even better service if a Shopmobility unit was provided in this new complex.
A further bid to the National Lottery board in partnership with Birmingham Alliance and Birmingham City Council was successful in achieving funding for the new Bullring Shopmobility scheme which opened on 4th September 2003. This new unit is proving to be yet another success, with new members joining every day and existing members all enjoying the new facilities.
The schemes proved to be a great success by providing a free service to any one with a mobility difficulty whether permanent or temporary to enjoy equal opportunities within the city centre. Since 2009 Snow Hill centre has closed and hire charges were introduced to raise some sustainable income.