Last week Blackwood attended the Independent Living Show in Glasgow’s SECC. The two day event brought together exhibitors from the health, housing, care and disability sectors to show the best of what is out there to help people live independently. Peter McWilliams is a Blackwood resident who visited the event to see the various exhibits and displays.


Here are his top 10 from the Independent Living Show…


1Action Assist bed

Here’s how Action Assisted describe the bed on their website:


“The Viscount 400 is a fully profiling height adjustable bed. It features a powered mattress platform which moves the user through 90 degrees from a sleeping position to sitting. The mattress platform then tilts forward by 21 degrees enabling the user to easily and independently get into or out of bed.”


Peter’s comment – I think it’s good for transferring into a wheelchair. I think it’s better than using a hoist. Obviously some people would still need a hoist but for others this could be a really good alternative. I’d like to have one anyway.

 2. Lewis Reed Car – Mercedes

It’s described on the website as providing:


“…flexible seating positions offering practical solutions for wheelchair users. The adaptable floor mounted rail system is quick and easy to use, giving a choice of up to 6 passenger seating positions plus wheelchair position”.


Peter’s comment – I think it was quite good the way the seats were laid out so there was plenty of room for a wheelchair to get in without having to transfer. I think the vans are probably the best for people who have a disability. Also the design of the interior is great. The whole thing looks really good.

3. Mini Crosser cabin scooter

The Mini Crosser’s page on the ILS website gives the following description:


“Functional, strong and amazingly comfortable the Mini-Crosser epitomises the desires of every mobility scooter user; no longer are you restricted in where you can go and how you'll get there, that can be left up to this impressive piece of equipment.”


Peter’s comment – I loved that. It would be great for when you got caught in the rain. It’s like you’re driving a car. It’s definitely an outdoor scooter. It would be good if you’re going down to the shops or out and about. I liked the colour too.

4. AAT Stair climbing chair

It cannot take a person up and down stairs solo unfortunately, but it could be useful in some other situations.


Peter’s Comment – It was amazing how it can give someone easy (ish) access to different floors, if say there’s no lift or if it’s broken. And someone won’t have to carry them up and down, and risk hurting their back or something.


5. Safehands (accessible hotels for disabled people)

This company runs a couple hotels which boast of top notch accessibility for people who have disabilities. They are located in Blackpool and Llandudno.


Peter’s comment – accessible accommodation is very important when you go travelling. These rooms, based on the info we can get, seem pretty good. But I guess everyone has to judge that for themselves.


6. Kirton Healthcare

Kirton Healthcare specialise in comfortable chairs for people who have mobility issues.


Peter’s Comment – They can lift you up and recline. If someone used a wheelchair it would be a nice change to sit on a recliner. For one it would be a lot more comfortable, especially if they had sores from being in the wheelchair too long.


7. Guide Dogs

 Nuff’ said really. Adorable dogs that are expertly trained and help people’s independence. How could they not make it onto this list.


Peter’s Comment – I love animals and I’ve had a few dogs before. The trainers were showing you how they train dogs. I asked them if I had a guide dog, could it be trained to work with my wheelchair? They explained that some dogs are trained to work with people who are wheelchair users.


8. MOTOmed Movement therapy

 Their website explains that:


“The MOTOmed movement trainer is especially suitable for people with limited mobility and those who are wheelchair users.”


This device is registered as a medical aid in Germany (where the parent company is based).


Peter’s Comment – I thought that looked really good for people to exercise. People can get a good workout and the legs get physiotherapy at the same time.


9. RollerScoot

 “Quite simply the lightest and most manoeuvrable personal mobility vehicle in the world” – That’s according to a testimony on their website. In any case Peter’s eye was caught by this machine zooming through the exhibition hall.


Peter’s Comment - I liked that! It’s probably more for people who can walk but maybe need crutches. It would definitely help you get around much faster.


10. Touch Bionics – i-Limb Ultra

No strangers to bespoken, Touch Bionics were there promoting their latest invention the i-Limb Ultra which has more functions and consequently more dexterity than the previous model. It can gently hold an egg and also tie shoe laces, just to name a few.


Peter Comment - I really liked the way the hand moved. It was very lifelike and so futuristic.


Check out more topics on bespoken...

Getting to grips with Ironhand

Best of Naidex 2015: at home, in the car, on the go

New website to make Physio more widely accessible

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