Despite living with disability, Graphic Designer and allotment blogger Ross Minton, aged 34 from Shropshire, has regained his ability to enjoy outdoor pursuits thanks to a remarkable new type of folding mobility scooter – a TGA Maximo.
Ross lives with his partner and two young children in Telford, Shropshire. He was born with an extremely rare condition that is similar to Muscular Dystrophy. Ross is one of only seven people in the world living with a specific type of Muscular Myopathy which results in reduced mobility and walking difficulties. Despite life-long challenges posed by his degenerative condition, Ross has excelled in higher education finally qualifying with a Master’s Degree in Advertising from The University of Wolverhampton.
He currently works as a part-time Graphic Designer and when Ross is not in the studio, he fulfils his passion for vegetable growing on an allotment. He blogs and vlogs about his gardening experiences and is starting to develop a channel focused on accessible places to visit. These pursuits along with a love for fishing were becoming increasingly challenging and Ross had become ‘stuck in a rut’ until he discovered the new folding Maximo mobility scooter from TGA.
The Maximo is a scooter that combines the benefits of transportability with added comfort and stability. Based on the best-selling compact Minimo range, this larger version includes suspension and rugged tyres for stable driving off-road. Once folded, the Maximo can be stored in an estate car or 4x4 so independence further afield is easy. This flexibility appeals to Ross as he explains: “Before owning my Maximo I had lost the ability to enjoy many of my outdoor pastimes and maintaining my allotment was becoming tough. I also have to look after several rescued chickens so was in desperate need of assistance. Combine this with everyday family life and the need to drive to work, owning a Maximo was a must. Now my horizons have been broadened once more, I can’t believe I resisted getting a scooter for so long. I thought it would be embarrassing to be seen driving one, how wrong could I have been. At school, I always used to try and hide my disability but perceptions have changed these days. I am now catching up on all the time I have missed at the allotment, on the riverbank and out with my family.”
Ross’s Maximo has given him the chance to fish again at his favourite National Trust location, Dudmaston Hall. He can hook-up a trailer to carry fishing gear and when back at the allotment, Ross uses this trolley to carry gardening tools and chicken feed. As the Maximo is engineered robustly, grass, gravel and mud can be easily negotiated without the worry of losing traction. Ross continues: ‘Even when its muddy on my allotment the Maximo copes admirably and all the potholes down my local lanes are no bother. Being able to do what you want, when you want, is so important. This is why I want to change peoples’ perception of mobility scooters – this will be my mission as part of my blog. As I build up a hub of videos and content highlights accessible places to visit, I will keep reiterating that any stigma associated with scooters must be forgotten. I want to inspire everyone, irrespective of ability, to get outdoors and enjoy life without having to depend on anybody. Through great looking design, such as the models from TGA, owning a scooter can be cool. It allows you to fulfil yourself, feel more positive and grow more vegetables!”