Hands up if you know about Ventoux


suspect that most of you will know nothing about Ventoux or possibly even what it is. In an effort to keep you interested, I will come back to

it in a few moments and explain all……. It might help to know that it is not a new cough mixture, a surgical appliance or even a latest brand of perfume.

We have a camper van

and we just took it for a blissful holiday to the South of France. I suppose that, accurately, the camper van took us, but I think you know what I mean…. I don`t mention this to be

swanky but with my background in the mobility industry, when away in foreign parts I find myself regularly checking out the local mobility shops, wheelchairs and scooters! You could legitimately accuse me of being a bit strange but

in truth, I won`t mind as I am genuinely interested to see new ideas and items that help the less able. Often I recognize products that are readily available here in the UK but now and again I discover some fresh devices which are both stylish and useful. Apart from that it`s a great way to meet people and have a chat. One of the finer aspects of France is the overall

excellent standard of the campsites. They are a far cry from my earliest recollections of windswept fields in the UK, battling the wind and rain in pursuit of having some fun. Our French campsite offered hot showers, shady

spots beneath a blazing sun and a restaurant that served delightful food (and wine). It was also a short stroll to the warm Mediterranean Sea. So, you may well ask, what has all of this got to do with mobility


and more especially healthcare? During our holiday we encountered people from all

parts of Europe and I was particularly inspired by a number of people and how they manage to cope with some pretty severe physical handicaps. More especially I was reminded of just how much responsibility we all have for our own well-being and just how important it is to keep as healthy as we can. There was a chap camped near us in a huge

camper van who sadly had some intense lung issues. His regular coughing was of a fairly distressing nature. He sat for many hours, in the shade, linked to a very modernistic looking nebulizer apparently enjoying a good book. Despite the obvious personal challenge involved, he also managed to fix this device to a bike and go for a ride every day. He also took it on a small trolley to the swimming pool and even the beach! To celebrate my birthday, we took to a “beach

club” for a small (!) drink overlooking the lovely bay. A very frail French lady arrived near us by walking stick and despite a distinct lack of flexibility, very slowly arranged her chair and the tasteful sun umbrella for comfort. She could scarcely walk 10 yards without a break, even with her stick, but obviously took great pleasure from spending time on the beach sipping a gin and tonic and partaking in a spot of “people watching”. I jumped to her aid and with my schoolboy French

managed to strike up a little conversation. She was, it transpired, 85 and had terrible arthritis in both legs. She also had breathing difficulties. Rather engagingly, once settled, she lit up a large murky looking cheroot

Eddie Peacock has worked in the mobility industry for “rather a long time”. He enjoyed a challenging career having started by selling wheelchairs, scooters and stairlifts for Sunrise Medical, eventually working his way to the position of UK sales manager. After a period as a self-employed consultant he was invited to manage, now Handicare Ltd,

Ability Needs Magazine

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