Sheffield BID has confirmed that plans are underway to relaunch the city centre’s mobility service, Mobile Sheffield.
The service, which provides shoppers with access to electric scooters, wheelchairs and more, was originally launched in 2017 as a partnership between the Council and Sheffield BID.
It was operated by a mobility company at The Moor Market following a successful tender. It shut down as a result of the pandemic.
Arrangements are currently being made for the service to relaunch this month.
Mobile Sheffield will be delivered by Sheffield BID through its Welcome Team and will operate out of the BID’s Surrey Street location (next to The Winter Garden).
Whatever a visitor’s age or walking ability, the scheme will offer reliable products to ensure people with walking difficulties or disabilities can access shops and local amenities. No blue badge is needed. Equipment, which must be booked in advance, can be hired by anyone with mobility issues, whether due to age, disability or injury.
The October relaunch is the first step to rejuvenating Mobile Sheffield which also includes a personal concierge service and meet and greet options.
The scheme will be developed further with other accessibility partners invited to help shape the service to visitors over the coming months.
Diane Jarvis, Head of Business Operations a Sheffield BID, said: “One of the BID’s aims is to help improve accessibility in the city centre. Bringing this scheme back to life is an important step in developing a disability-friendly city. It also demonstrates the city centre’s commitment to being inclusive. We want to ensure that access is not an issue and that everyone can enjoy what the city centre has to offer. Safeguarding the earlier Mobile Sheffield scheme is important to ensure the city centre has a mobility hire service in place.
“We welcome conversations with disability partners to develop Mobile Sheffield and look forward to working with partners in the city to ensure the scheme continues to evolve to meet the needs of visitors.”
Councillor Douglas Johnson, Executive Member for Climate Change, Environment and Transport, said:
“It’s really important that everyone using the city centre is able to access all of the services and amenities available, but we do recognise that some areas have always posed challenges for people with limited mobility. As a council we’re committed to improving travel and accessibility in the city centre and making it as easy as possible for people to move around, whether this is through pedestrianizing busy areas or simplifying routes so people can make easier, quicker journeys.
"Mobile Sheffield offers an opportunity to start up a new Shopmobility service that will support people to feel more confident in visiting the city centre.
"The previous service was sadly missed by many disabled people who could hire a motorised powerchair to travel round the city centre. I support this new initiative, which has the potential to grow and help make the city centre more accessible to people with limited mobility.”