A voluntary car scheme operating in South Holland is busier than ever and urgently needs more volunteers.
The South Holland Parish Voluntary Car Scheme – which covers 11 towns and villages – can be booked for trips such as shopping or hospital appointments.
Although there are 60 volunteer drivers for Spalding, Gedney, Cowbit, Holbeach (including Fleet), Long Sutton, Sutton Bridge, Crowland, Lutton, Whaplode, Weston and Moulton, more are urgently needed.
Driver Coun Angela Newton said: “People are living longer and when they get their pension book they get aches and pains and need to go to the doctors or for hospital appointments.
“But we’ve just lost some drivers in Spalding through retirement or sickness and desperately need more.”
Greg Greene, who is co- ordinator for the district, said he decided to become a driver after retiring from the RAF.
He said: “I joined the scheme because it’s about helping people and then stepped in as co-ordinator. Many of the passengers live on their own and just enjoy the ride and talking to people.
“But we can also be of comfort because we may have taken other people to hospital for a similar reason.”
One of the drivers, Iris Landen, recently received a Community Hero Award for her work with the Voluntary Car Service as the Spalding organiser, receiving 100 calls a week from passengers wanting to book trips.
Mr Greene said: “It was a well-deserved award. Iris has done so much for the scheme.”
The cost of booking the service is 35p a mile – which works out at about £7 for a 20-mile round trip, with a minimum charge of £4. The car scheme pays a further 10p from participating parishes.
Drivers will wait up to two hours for passengers, especially on trips to hospitals in Leicester or Nottingham.
To become a driver, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01775 630144.