NORTH Ribblesdale RUFC has invested more than £25,000 in a disabled acess lift for its clubhouse at Grove Park, Settle.

The vertical lift means that the clubhouse and its social activities are now accessible to everyone in the community, says club chairman Gavin Davidson, who adds there has already been an increase in bookings from organisations that previously could not use the facility as people with mobility issues could not get upstairs.

Long term supporter, John Winder, from Hellifield, who uses a wheelchair and has had his own reserved parking space at the club ground for 10 years, and who up until now was unable to use the clubhouse was the first supporter to use the lift.

He said “I have been unable to get upstairs for the last 12 years and when I was invited to be the first beneficiary of the lift, I was amazed at how smart the club is. North Ribblesdale are a true community club, and they have always made me feel welcome."

Mr Davidson added: " We at North Ribblesdale value very highly being able to make our facilities available to everybody in our community, and the recent addition of our lift makes the clubhouse accessible to many who have been unable to be part of the social side of the club since its opening some 30 years ago. From a personal point of view I believe it moves the club forwards and makes us an even more integral part of the town than we already obviously are."