Boston Spa woman launches Doorbell campaign

A disabled Boston Spa woman is heading a campaign to make the village and Wetherby more accessible.

By Janet Harrison
Friday, 11th February 2022, 12:40 pm
Updated Tuesday, 15th February 2022, 2:44 pm

Claire Maxted-Wiggins has four types of arthritis and fibromyalgia and other chronic health problems but wants to make life easier for other residents with mobility issues.

“I have lived in Boston spa all my life, for 42 years,” said Claire who has raised over £65,000 over the last 26 years for various charities despite being in constant pain and living on a cocktail of medications.

“There are a lot of people in the village that are disabled and elderly, a lot of us have mobility problems and use wheelchairs and sticks.

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Claire Maxted-Wiggins who has launched the Doorstep campaign in the Boston Spa and Wetherby area.

Now Claire has launched the Doorbell campaign in the area, including Wetherby, to improve access to businesses by ringing for help.

“The idea is if someone in a wheelchair or a disabled person could not access a business or shop due to steps, narrow doorways etc, a doorbell would be in place, and we would ring it for assistance.

“A member of staff would come to us and assist us with our enquiry or shopping.

“These days most shops have contactless card machines and so we can pay for shopping where we are too.”

Claire, who is also the first UK ambassador for the Invisible Disabilities Association, says buildings in the area create problems because of their age but there is a need to overcome these.

“Boston spa is a Georgian village and has lots of old buildings.

“A lot of these buildings are listed and cannot be changed or adapted, those that can be can cost a lot of money.

“There are a lot of buildings that are not accessible and have steps that we struggle to climb.

“Some are just not accessible and we can’t wheel ourselves inside.”

She added that businesses, village halls, churches and pubs, can put a doorbell on the entrance to the property and place a sticker in the window to show they area part of the scheme.

“In the next few weeks I will be visiting the village in my wheelchair with my mum and speaking to local shops and businesses and handing out leaflets and letters and getting their thoughts.

“I will be working alongside Rachel Adam Smith who is running her own community group in Boston Spa, helping the village become more disabled accessible.”

Claire added: “I have always had challenges, especially with access.

“It’s 2022 and in this day and age we should be able to get to and from places.”