For Marion, the Bristol Dial-a-Ride service has been life changing, giving her access to attend hospital appointments and get to the shops.
Marion has been using the Dial-a-Ride service from Bristol Community Transport for the past two years to attend hospital and dental appointments. She also uses the service to shop at the local supermarkets. Getting a taxi to her monthly or twice monthly appointments at Southmead Hospital was costing Marion £60 for a round trip.
‘In March 2016 my husband Derek died after a short illness,’ explains Marion. ‘We had a good life – holidays, trips out in our car, shopping, visiting friends and so on, but when he died all that died with him. My grandsons helped by taking me shopping at weekends, but that wasn’t fair on them or me.
‘Then searching online I found Dial-a-Ride – I could request rides to hospital for appointments, shopping trips and going into town to meet friends… I can say in all honesty it transformed my life. Not only has it given me back my independence, but has made me so much better off financially – I cannot access public transport so my alternative would be taxis.
‘One of the biggest benefits of Dial-a-Ride is that it helps to ease the loneliness many elderly people feel by taking them back into the community. I also belong to the personal car scheme and have used that twice to go to family weddings.’