Travel writer Ellie Rickards shares her experience of working for travel company Limitless Travel
With as many as 11 million people in the UK having a physical disability of some kind, it is both logical and natural to assume that sufficient help is in place to ensure these people can partake in one of Britain’s favourite pastimes: travel. This assumption would be incorrect.
In his twenties, a man named Angus Drummond was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy, a progressive muscle wasting condition that will one day leave him unable to move independently. However, seizing life by the horns – while he still could – he set out to travel the world. The difficulties, physical hardships and prejudices he faced changed his view of the world; how could assisted disabled travel be such unchartered territory?
Returning home, Angus ventured to put an end to that by founding Limitless Travel Ltd, a truly wonderful small business facilitating incredible holidays in the UK and Europe for those with reduced mobility or a disability. Recently celebrating its 3rd birthday, this company has grown at an extraordinary rate (500% growth just last year) and is thus sending hundreds of people away on a holiday they often never thought they’d be able to have. Awards, interviews and numerous magazine articles can only begin to describe their success, see their Facebook page for more evidence.
With destinations vetted by the team (most of which have, or have experience of, a disability), beach wheelchairs allowing holiday-goers into the sea, an accompanying team of professional carers, specialist equipment, or the exceptional level of support from those working hard behind the scenes, Limitless Travel provides a holiday to remember for its customers.
I was lucky enough to be welcomed into this wonderful team on a summer internship several months ago, and enjoyed every day there (who needs sunshine, friends or summer parties anyway?) This was soon extended from one month to four as I came to see the magic the company was creating. Chatting to people on the phone who haven’t left their village in over two decades and then seeing them laughing on a Spanish beach was a frequent occurrence at the office, as were regular meetings whereby the team attempted to reshuffle, alter and change everything possible at considerable effort, just so that one elderly couple can bring their own wheelchair away with them. Never have I met a group of young professionals so brilliant at their jobs and with such a passion for their work. Their innovation, efficiency and commitment bring endless joy to individuals, families and carers alike.
Without giving away any top-secret company plans, I can proudly say that holidays all around the world, suiting all needs and age-groups will be available for our generation, and I am truly proud to have been a part of that.
The difference a holiday can make to someone with a disability is unimaginable to someone able-bodied like me, but it is so much more than a change of scenery. It instils a deep sense of pride, allows a week of laughter with new-found friends, gives carers a well-deserved rest and most importantly gives people a confidence which is transferable to all aspects of life. It seems unrealistic that one phone call to Limitless Travel can lead to regular trips abroad with your family, a network of understanding and supportive friends and a new love of life, but it happens. In fact, it’s probably happened several times today.
My involvement is this burgeoning industry has changed the way I see travel, something I have loved and respected from a young age, but something I didn’t realise was only easily accessible to able-bodied people. The times are changing, and soon the rest of the world will follow Limitless Travel forward: the pioneers of accessible travel.
Angus is the kind of person I would call a Dreamer. He envisions a greater world for himself, his family and the entire population, and has the skill and passion to bring those dreams to life. With an unquenchable desire to change the world, Angus and his team have proven that humanity, and life itself, is Limitless.