Donation of a Minibus to Hillcote Respite Service

League of Friends presenting new minibus to Hillcote

Hillcote provides overnight respite and day care services for children aged 6-18 years old who have severe learning disabilities and associated health needs such as emotional, behavioural or physical disabilities. Hillcote is based in a residential area of Salisbury and is a modified house with a range of specially adapted additional facilities to meet the needs of these children. Its aim is to provide specialist care in a child-friendly, homely environment that provides fun and learning opportunities to the children and families that use our service. Within Hillcote there are many facilities for children to experience, such as a large garden with swings, roundabout, trampoline, bouncy castle, sensory garden, computer room, art area, sensory room and much more.

There is a team of dedicated staff who provides care for all the children who use the service. The team is led by registered learning disability nurses and supported by health care support workers, catering and domestic staff. A number of the staff have worked at Hillcote for over twenty years. Care is planned to support children in developing interests, and having the ability to visit places off site from Hillcote is invaluable to the children.

Hillcote now has a mini bus, which was kindly donated to us by the League of Friends of Salisbury Hospital, and this enables the children to access opportunities that other children can enjoy. Without the minibus it would be very difficult to reach many of the community facilities that are in the Salisbury and South Wiltshire area. Although Hillcote is based in Salisbury, it is on a hill and can be difficult for staff to support the children safely as pedestrians. Having the minibus means this is overcome as they can easily be transported to the city centre for the shops, the library, health and sports centres etc. The children cannot always use public transport so a minibus further helps in getting them to places further afield like the seaside, Paultons Park, Longleat Safari Park and other attractions.

We are therefore immensely grateful to the League of Friends of Salisbury Hospital for their most generous donation which has enabled Hillcote to purchase the minibus.

Stephen Hill, Manager of Hillcote Respite Service