A FLOOD of support has poured in for a popular volunteer scheme which helps disabled visitors travel around Peterborough following an impassioned cry for help.Offers of cold-hard cash and free-of-charge repair work has “restored the faith in humanity” of former policeman councillor John Fox, who is co-ordinator of Peterborough Shopmobility.
Facing hefty repair bills, the Queensgate shopping centre-based scheme made an urgent plea for donations for seven of its mobility scooters, which they had no money to pay for.
However, just hours after The Evening Telegraph hit news stands last Saturday, the scheme, which is part of Peterborough Council for Voluntary Service, was inundated with calls.
The generosity of the people of Peterborough has shone through, but none more so than from Jason Watling and his father, David, at the Mobility Aid Centre, in South Street, Stanground.
The centre, which has worked with the scheme for its 27-year existence, has remarkably offered to complete the essential repair work, including replacing batteries, free of charge.
The news has been met with delight by Cllr Fox, who represents Werrington North, who said: “I’m absolutely over the moon. I’ve known Jason and his father for years, and they have always been good to us at the scheme.
“They provided another scooter when we took one to the Ukraine for a man who had no legs. They are real gentlemen, and words can’t describe their generosity.”
Mr Watling, who runs the centre with his father, said: “We’ve worked with Peterborough Shopmobility since it was just being started about 20-odd years ago.
“We’ve supported it quite a lot over the years. We’ve had a really good relationship with it and John’s doing a great job. Seeing it stuck wasn’t nice.”
But that is not all, as the scheme has also received a two cheques from residents in Peterborough totalling more than £500, which will be saved and used for future repairs.
Cllr Fox added: “The people of Peterborough always come up trumps, they are just so generous.
“One of the things I found when I was a policeman was that you can become very cynical in your views on humanity.
“But when you get involved in charity work, you realise there’s some really decent people out there as well.”
The Evening Telegraph, 25th May 2009