The Tom Hillier Award Shortlist Announced!1
We are inching ever closer to finding this year’s winner of the coveted Tom Hillier Award. Today we announce the shortlist and in 27 days, the winner will be announced.
The Tom Hillier Award is granted to the shopmobility scheme that shows, through their nominations, that they have given an exemplary service to their clients over the last 12 months. Every year the judges are tasked with choosing a winner from the schemes who enter. Every year is a difficult decision because shopmobilities across the UK really care about their clients and often go above and beyond to help where they can.
Tom Hillier was the founder of the National Federation of Shopmobility and when he passed away in 1991, the Tom Hillier Award was set up in his memory. With the exception of 2014, a transition period for the federation, the award has been presented every year since and for the last 4 years, it has formed part of the British Healthcare Trade Awards celebrations.
This year’s celebrations will be venturing out of the capital city and will be taking place at the Alton Towers Resort Hotel in Staffordshire on the 29th of November. With a winter wonderland theme, a four-course meal to include Christmas dinner, it is sure to get everyone in the Christmas spirit.
So without further ado, the shortlisted schemes in alphabetical order are:
Age UK Calderdale & Kirklees
Braehead Shopmobility – Glasgow
Concern Wadebridge – Cornwall
High Wycombe Shopmobility
Age UK Calderdale & Kirklees, based in Halifax Calderdale & Kirklees are new to the Tom Hillier Awards. They provide services outside of the standard shopmobility services, which include renting high backed chairs to those who have had hip operations as well as renting smaller mobility aids like rollators. They also work closely with two agricultural shows to provide free use of scooters to visitors, which helps to raise the profile of the scheme and what they offer.
Braehead Shopmobility, based in Glasgow were the 2017 winners of the Tom Hillier Award and they previously won in 2005. The scheme runs from the shopping centre and the staff have welcomed 3000 new customers in the last 12 months. The staff like to inject fun into their work and have previously dressed up for events, run raffles and invited customers to attend their fundraising events.
Concern Wadebridge, based in Cornwall are new to entering the Tom Hillier Award. They have diversified this year promoting themselves as Holiday Mobility so that holidaymakers know they can make use of the services they provide this has led to a huge increase in customers over the last 12 months. They have also purchased scooters that are able to cope with the tougher terrain of the Camel Trail, meaning those with mobility impairments, who would previously have been unable to enjoy walking this trail with their families, can now join in.
High Wycombe Shopmobility, based in High Wycombe, they have regularly taken part in the Tom Hillier Awards and last year received a Highly Commended Certificate for their efforts. This year has seen the scheme work hard on raising its profile within the local community by working with the local radio and the council as well as the local lotto fund. High Wycombe works hard at keeping its service free for its clients by looking to reduce overheads and increase their fundraising efforts. They also take part in the ‘Safe Place’ scheme, which means they are recognised as a safe place within the community for vulnerable people to go for help.
Littlehampton Shopmobility, based on the south coast Littlehampton is a regular entrant to the awards and in 2017 they received a Highly Commended Certificate, as well as a special recognition award for their part in starting the National Mobility Registration Service. They are a small but mighty scheme that makes sure they are kept in the public eye by hosting coffee mornings, holding fundraising events and writing up the stories for the local press.
On the 29th of November one of these schemes will be announced the winner of the 2018 Tom Hillier Award and if the judges see fit they may award one or more Highly Commended Certificates. Check back on the 30th of November when we will announce the winner and share photos from the event.