The Primrose Car service was established in 2006 to provide free transport to Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge for cancer patients receiving radiotherapy. This unique service, believed to be one-of-a-kind in the UK, operates for five days every week, with a team of 25 volunteer drivers. Co-ordinated by a part-time volunteer manager, the service is made possible by the Bedford Hospital Charity & Friends, through generous donations received from the community.
The annual mileage of each vehicle is 25,000 and the cars are replaced after they have travelled 70-80,000 miles. The service works with the generous cooperation and support of the East of England Ambulance Service, covering the cost of servicing, insurance and fuel.
Hundreds of patients have expressed their sincere gratitude for such support and many relax in the atmosphere of camaraderie and banter during the journeys. One patient wrote that: "You made my stressful treatment more bearable. Everyone was so thoughtful and helpful. Thank you so much"
The Primrose Cars provide a service for those without their own transport or family support and invariably complete their round trips and treatment in a morning of afternoon. Patients would otherwise use the Ambulance Service which often means a long day out as several patients at a time are collected and retuned from North and Central Bedfordshire. Especially challenging when patient strength and resilience is often at a low ebb after surgery and chemotherapy before embarking on their radiotherapy treatment.
In the Queen's 2014 Birthday Honours list the Primrose Car Service Volunteers were recognised by being awarded the prestigious Queens Award for Voluntary Service.
Anything that you donate would be very much appreciated as this will go towards ensuring the continuance of this fantastic service. The service costs around £25,000 per year to maintain to ensure the cars are replaced in a timely fashion.
Thank you very much for your generous support