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New Platform Lift Improves Access At A Specialist Disabled Riding School

A Derbyshire Riding Centre has recently improved facilities for its disabled members and visitors with the help of Leicester-based Movement Management. The company has recently completed the installation of one of its Companion Prestige platform lifts. This is the second time that Movement Management has supplied a wheelchair lift to a specialist disabled riding centre.

Scropton Riding Centre is a founder member of the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA), a national registered charity with more than six hundred and fifty groups throughout the UK. The centres aim is to give disabled people the opportunity to enjoy a positive and enjoyable form of therapy. Scropton was the first purpose built RDA centre in the country. Almost three hundred disabled riders benefit from its facilities every week. The centre relies upon charitable donations to cover the feed and grooming costs of the twenty horses and ponies stabled there. All the instructors are specially trained to ensure that each rider receives a professional tuition, tailored to their personal ambitions and capabilities.

The platform lift was installed to enable the riding centre to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. At the same time, it was important that the lift met the specification requirements laid down in part M of the England and Wales building regulations. John Ward, Project Coordinator at the centre explains. "I had seen disabled access platform lifts, installed by Movement Management, at several other public locations. I had been impressed by their design and the fact that they comply with part M. When we needed to provide alternative access, for the disabled, to the centre, I naturally approached Movement Management to help us."

The lift was originally specified so that disabled visitors could reach the upstairs viewing gallery, some 2.57 metres above the ground level in the centres indoor riding school. It was also planned that it would perform a secondary function, providing a stop off point at the disabled rider loading platform. From this point, a special hoist is used to help the rider on to the horse. John Ward continues. "The loading platform is only one metre above the ground. As we are no longer allowed to lift the disabled adult riders and we could not install a ramp, we are delighted that the new lift can serve the loading platform lift, as well as the viewing gallery." To ensure sufficient clearance in front of the lift, the loading hoist had to be repositioned. Movement Management were happy to cover the cost of the modifications, in recognition of Scropton Riding Centres charitable status. A gesture that John Ward appreciated. "Movement Management performed very well throughout the contract. We were extremely thankful for their generous gesture in paying for the work to the hoist." He says.

The Companion Prestige is a free standing platform lift, requiring no additional supporting structure. It runs on a single phase 240 volt electricity supply and has a lifting capacity of 400kg. The lift height is limited to a maximum of nine metres. As with all Movement Management products, the Prestige fully complies with all relevant legislation and its platform is large enough to accommodate a wheelchair user and attendant. At Scropton, the lift is equipped with voice indication at the three levels and tactile push buttons, making it suitable for use by the visually impaired. It is, also, fitted with a full range of emergency escape features, in the event of power failure.

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