Battle of Britain hero over the moon after stolen mobility scooter replaced
PUBLISHED: 16:26 20 June 2016 | UPDATED: 16:31 20 June 2016
Ex-serviceman Rodney Scrase was given a new scooter with the help of Ride of Respect
An ex-serviceman who fought in the Battle of Britain was ‘over the moon’ when a charity and staff at a Biggin Hill cafe arranged to buy him a new mobility scooter.
Rodney Scrase, 94, had his vehicle stolen from outside his house, so staff at The Spitfire Cafe on Main Road decided to get him a new one.
Mr Scrase is a recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross and regularly gets invited to commemorative events, and the scooter played an important role in helping him travel around.
Sally O’Connor, who owns the cafe, said: “He drove home one day and someone drove up and took his mobility scooter from outside his house.
“Shoreham Aircraft Museum bought him a second hand one, but that gave up the ghost.
“Ady Shaw, who helps out with veterans at the cafe, approached us with the idea or organising a collection for a new one - but it would take ages, and we wanted him to have it now.”
Mrs O’Connor got in touch with Ride of Respect, an organisation that provides support for ex-services personnel.
“I phoned up Julia Stevens at Ride of Respect, and within ten minutes she called me back and offered £1,500 for a new scooter,” she said.
Mr Shaw contacted Charterwood Mobility at Newnham Court, who knocked £250 off their asking price for a scooter.
“Within an hour and a half it was in the back of his car,” Mrs O’Connor said.
“We surprised Rodney with it - he thought he was just popping in for his bacon sandwich!
“Everyone was there, and when they pulled away the sheet covering his scooter he was so delighted; he was absolutely over the moon.
“My dad started crying, and Rodney’s wife was absolutely delighted.
“They couldn’t believe the support and kindness from people they don’t really know.”