A THORPE Lea pensioner has welcomed a new start for 2013 after having a stairlift donated to help get round her home.
Carol Eckersley, 67, was given the new lift by Acorn Stairlifts in partnership with Limbcare, a charity that supports the limb impaired and helps people to adapt their lives.
Mrs Eckersley, of Thorpe Lea Road, suffered complications after a routine hip replacement six years ago, which left her in severe pain and unable to use her stairs.
However, the new stairlift has opened up her home once again and staved off the prospect of having to move into sheltered accommodation.
Speaking of her situation, she said: "After the first operation, I was in severe pain and it took doctors three-and-a-half years to discover metal parts from my hip had been entering my blood stream."
"Not only that but the hip components were decomposing the muscles around my hip area and buttocks, causing my hip to dislocate. It was so painful."
Now, six years, four dislocations and three operations later, Mrs Eckersley's right hip has been operated on to prevent any future problems.
"In April this year I then had to have my left hip replaced, which has left me even more disabled," she added. "The only way I could move around my home was with a crutch. Getting up the stairs was extremely difficult and I was exhausted just getting to my bedroom, especially at night when I am tired."
Limbcare offers help and support to limb impaired, amputees, families and friends, civilians or ex-military. Each year, the Limbcare board committee selects one serviceman and one civilian to receive donations of equipment or products for vital home adaptations.
The collaboration between Limbcare and Acorn was organised in time for Mrs Eckersley's new stairlift to be fitted just before Christmas. She said "Having the lift is wonderful. It means I can stay where I have lived for the past 15 years without the trauma and upheaval of moving."
"I am overwhelmed by the kindness and consideration shown by all at Limbcare and the generosity of Acorn Stairlifts, who have literally changed my life."
Edwards said of the donation: "It is so humbling to know that with Acorn's generous donation Limbcare has been able to help and support this lady."
Original article by Russell Butt, appearing in the 24th January 2013 edition of the Surrey Herald.