A LIFELINE mobility service in Yate is facing uncertainty, as grants it is currently receiving are due to come to an end in March.

Shopmobility hires out scooters to people with disabilities and mobility problems from Yate Shopping Centre for a day to do their shopping or on longer leases.

Applications for new grants are in the pipeline, but project worker Sheridan Crew says gaps in the service’s funding means its future remains uncertain.

Mr Crew, the only paid member of staff at Shopmobility, which runs out of Yate Library four days a week, said: “I don’t think people realise how important this service is.

“We provide people with the means to be independent, to go off and do their own shopping, and to give their main carer a little break.

“Isolation is a real social problem these days, and we give some very isolated people the chance to get out and about.

“I’ve seen massive changes in people, simply because they’ve been able to get out the house.”

Vice chairman David Bell, a founding trustee since 2004, said: “We hope we can continue this vital much needed service for our users, but that is dependent on continued funding.”

A South Gloucestershire Council spokesman said: “Funding via the Better Care, Stronger Communities grant was awarded to Shopmobility for a fixed three year period which comes to an end in March 2018, and advance notice has been given that the funding arrangement is due to come to an end.

“Officers from our Children, Adults & Health team are working with Shopmobility to assess the impact of this and to support them to be able to continue to provide this service.”