Plea Made To Help Fund Van for Fulham Sheltered Accommodation

Age UK's local branch need replacement due to new ULEZ charges

Age UK Hammersmith And Fulham's bus needs replacing. Picture: Age UK

An elderly Fulham woman has called on locals to help raise more than £66,000 so that Age UK can buy a new minibus for taking them on days out.

Lillian Urban said her and fellow residents of Lygon House are “desperate” to still go on trips to the Tesco superstore in West Cromwell Road.

Age UK’s Hammersmith and Fulham branch also uses its disabled-friendly bus to take groups of five to visit the capital’s museums, the theatre, and even the seaside.

Mrs Urban, 87, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “I’m housebound so I’m near enough dependent on that bus for ever going outside.

“And we really need a new one. It’s our lifeline. They take us shopping with it, maybe four or five of us. We call it the shopping bus.

“We go to Tesco in Earls Court and I take my stroller. It’s a lovely Tesco and we’re so well looked after, they’re so kind to us.”

She continued, “Last week we went for the first time in four months and it was wonderful. I bought stacks of dinners to put in the microwave. I love a shepherd’s pie.

“And last year Age UK drove us to Hastings as well,” said Mrs Urban, a widow whose closest relative is her grandson, after her three children passed away at separate times.

Lillian Urban calls for help with fundraising for a new minibus for Age UK Hammersmith and Fulham Source: Age UK
Lillian Urban calls for help with fundraising for a new minibus. Picture: Age UK

Age UK says it needs a new bus with improvements to help people with mobility problems get on and off. Its current bus is also non-compliant with TfL’s ULEZ (Ultra-low Emission Zone) regulations, which impose an extra charge for driving in central London with a high-polluting vehicle.

The charity hopes to crowdfund £66,331 by September 11. It had raised £4,365 as of 4 August.

TfL’s “low emissions zones” and “ultra-low emissions zones” took effect in April last year.

Asked about the ULEZ charge, Ms Urban said, “I don’t really know much about it dear. I’m terribly selfish, I just want to go to the shops because a few of us absolutely depend on it.”

Originally from Shepherd’s Bush, she moved in 2017 to Lygon House sheltered accommodation, in Fulham Palace Road, which houses up to 41 residents.

Make a donation by visiting the Age UK crowdfunding page.

Owen Sheppard - Local Democracy Reporter

August 5, 2020