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Group Captain Geoffrey Leonard Cheshire, Baron Cheshire, VC, OM, DSO and Two Bars, DFC, founder of the charity

Leonard Cheshire Disability is a major health and welfare charity working in the United Kingdom and running development projects around the world. It was founded in 1948 by RAF pilot Leonard Cheshire.

The philosophy of Leonard Cheshire Disability is to encourage and move disabled individuals toward independent living and with the freedom to live life their way. The charity supports disabled people through local care services include residential homes, supported living, domiciliary support, day services, activity centres, respite care, transition services, and employment and skills support. It also runs political campaigns on issues affecting disabled people.

In 2013–14 it had a total income of over £162 million. placing it in the top 40 of UK charities.[1] Around 90% of its income is from government grants, with around £18 million in donations (2013/14),[2]


The charity was originally known as The Cheshire Foundation Homes for the Sick. In 1976 it became the Leonard Cheshire Foundation and in 2007 adopted its current name, Leonard Cheshire Disability.[3]

Cheshire started the charity in 1948 with a residential home for disabled ex-servicemen at Le Court, a large country house near Liss in Hampshire. By 1955 there were six Cheshire homes in Britain. The first overseas Cheshire Home was established in Mumbai, India, in 1956.[4] By 1992 there were 270 homes in 49 countries.[5]

Each of these "Cheshire Homes", as they came to be called were similarly set up: local communities came forward, assembled a group of volunteers, found whatever suitable accommodation they could, set up administrative committees and began raising funds for development. This gave each Cheshire Home a local structure closely knit to the community they were serving while being affiliated with an international organization.

The homes and services in the UK and Isle of Man are run by the UK charity. Over 200 other Cheshire homes and organisations around the world exist, run independently but affiliated to a Leonard Cheshire Global Alliance.[6]


The UK charity is headquartered in London and its main stated objectives are "to provide effective and efficient community-based services to disabled people that respond to their preferences" and to "campaign in partnership with disabled people, allies and supporters for a society that provides equality to disabled people."[7]


Leonard Cheshire Disability provides support to disabled people through a variety of different services including care at home, residential care and training and skills programmes. It describes itself as "the UK's leading voluntary sector provider of support services for disabled people". Its goal is to change attitudes to disability and to serve disabled people around the world.[8]

The charity's activities are particularly focused on guiding and encouraging the disabled to move toward independence and live life their way. It formerly ran the Ability International Media Awards, recognising disabled people in the media.[9]

Related organisations[edit]

The Ryder-Cheshire Foundation[10] was set up by Leonard Cheshire and his wife Sue Ryder at the time of their marriage in 1959. It now mainly operates in two fields:

  • the rehabilitation of disabled people, through Ryder-Cheshire Volunteers[11]
  • the prevention and treatment of tuberculosis, through Target Tuberculosis.[12]

The Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre is a joint project by Leonard Cheshire Disability and University College London (originally set up in 1997 as the Leonard Cheshire Centre of Conflict Recovery).[13] The Centre is dedicated to generating applied research on disability in development, with particular emphasis on poverty and economic development in terms of livelihoods, inclusive education and public health. Centre staff also work closely on policy issues at a global level, serving in an advisory capacity to a number of UN agencies (including UNDESA, UNICEF, ILO, World Bank) and bilateral organisations (including DFID, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Australia)). The Centre is based in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London.

Cheshire founded the Raphael Pilgrimage to support sick and disabled people to travel to Lourdes.[14]

Sue Ryder Care, a charity founded in 1953 by Sue Ryder, before she met Leonard Cheshire, is also one of the 50 largest charities in the UK.[15]

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Top 10 charities by income". Charity Commission. Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  2. ^ "Too many of our 'charities' are nothing of the sort". Telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-02-02. 
  3. ^ "Press release". 
  4. ^ Chennai news
  5. ^ Christopher Foxley-Norris, "Cheshire, (Geoffrey) Leonard, Baron Cheshire (1917–1992)", Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edn, May 2008 accessed 18 July 2008
  6. ^ "Global Alliance - Leonard Cheshire Disability". Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  7. ^ "Charity Commission for England and Wales: Charity Number 218186". Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  8. ^ Leonard Cheshire Disability
  9. ^ http://www.lcdisability.org/?lid=14883 2010 Ability Media International Awards
  10. ^ Charity Commission for England and Wales: Charity Number 285746
  11. ^ Registered Charity No. 1088623 Ryder-Cheshire Volunteers
  12. ^ Registered Charity No. 1098752 Target Tuberculosis
  13. ^ Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre
  14. ^ The Raphael Pilgrimage was later constituted as a registered charity: The Raphael Pilgrimage, Registered Charity no. 1098328 at the Charity Commission .
  15. ^ Ranked by expenditure. Source: Charities Direct: Top 500 Charities - Expenditure
  16. ^ 'Dutton, Maj.-Gen. Bryan Hawkins (born 1 March 1943)' in Who's Who (London A. & C. Black)

Further reading[edit]

  • Morris, Richard. Cheshire: The Biography of Leonard Cheshire, VC, OM. London: Viking Press, 2000. ISBN 0-670-86735-7.

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonard_Cheshire_Disability — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
24661 videos foundNext > 

A Day in the Life of Leonard Cheshire Disability

Scenes from our work in the UK and around the world. Find out more about what we do on our website: https://www.leonardcheshire.org.

A world where every person is equally valued — Leonard Cheshire Disability

http://www.leonardcheshire.org - Leonard Cheshire Disability is the UK's leading charity supporting disabled people all over the world. And we believe in ...

The difference we make - four stories from Leonard Cheshire Disability

We're proud to share our first ever 'impact film', showing four stories to highlight some of the work we did in 2014. Find out more about what we do at ...

"Spring Riders" Leonard Cheshire Disability

Winner of the "Most Enlightening Story" at the Gloucester Stories Film Competition run by Gloucester City Council in conjunction with the Rugby World Cup ...

Assistive technology changes lives - Leonard Cheshire Disability

Produced for presentation at Newsroom's Got Talent 2013. For more information on assistive technology, contact Leonard Cheshire Disability.

Varsity Match 2014 - Leonard Cheshire Disability

http://www.leonardcheshire.org/varsity - Former England international Alastair Hignell introduces the charity partnership between Leonard Cheshire Disability ...

Seed to Plate - Bells Piece - Leonard Cheshire Disability

Seed to Plate is an amazing project that has changed the lives of disabled people by supporting them to grow, choose, prepare and cook nutritional, tasty meals ...

No Limit - Le Court Film Unit - Leonard Cheshire Disability

Continuing our series of archive films for UK Disability History Month, here's an extract from a film made by the Le Court Film Unit in the 1960s. The unit was ...

Tri Together triathlon - Leonard Cheshire Disability

http://www.leonardcheshire.org/tritogether - Tri Together is an award-winning series of triathlons for people of all ages and abilities to swim, bike and run ...

Leonard Cheshire Disability

Film by Close Up Productions for Leonard Cheshire Disability to raise awareness and increase fundraising during events like the London Marathon. This was ...

24661 videos foundNext > 

4081 news items

Rochdale Online

Rochdale Online
Wed, 27 Jan 2016 10:05:01 -0800

Honresfeld Leonard Cheshire Disability Care Home, in Littleborough, is to close down - staff are to be made redundant and residents will need to be found a new home. A letter was distributed on Wednesday (27 January) to all staff, announcing that the ...
Torquay Herald Express
Wed, 10 Feb 2016 10:31:24 -0800

At present Torbay Community Development Trust's volunteer centre has over 200 live volunteering vacancies, ranging from being a cinema escort with Leonard Cheshire Disability to being the volunteer co-ordinator for Special Educational Needs ...

Rochdale Online

Rochdale Online
Tue, 02 Feb 2016 16:51:39 -0800

Relatives of Leonard Cheshire Disability care home residents have vowed to “keep fighting” against the closure of the home, saying that there is nowhere for the residents to go. Rochdale Online revealed last week (Wednesday 27 January) that the home, ...
Hunts Post
Tue, 09 Feb 2016 05:02:59 -0800

Other groups taking part included Hartford Junior School, Leonard Cheshire Disability and Stukeley Meadows School, with participants collecting chocolate as they finished. Teams from Tesco, BID Huntingdon and Luminus also featured in a relay race ...

NW Evening Mail

NW Evening Mail
Mon, 08 Feb 2016 08:07:30 -0800

The voluntary work done by Louise has been to help support children with physical and learning difficulties, and for the past four years she has volunteered for the Leonard Cheshire Disability Association and Autis Barrow. Upon winning, Louise said ...

The Cornishman

The Cornishman
Thu, 21 Jan 2016 05:29:39 -0800

St Teresa's Care Home in Penzance has purchased a standing wheelchair to support their disabled residents at the Leonard Cheshire Disability home. Residents are given greater mobility and independence as a result of pressing the button on the chair ...

Third Sector

Third Sector
Fri, 01 May 2015 02:00:25 -0700

The national charity that supports disabled people has created a spoof property website called Can't Move to highlight how hard it is for disabled people to find suitable housing. Each visitor is asked to type in their postcode in order to find their ...

Falmouth Packet

Falmouth Packet
Sat, 23 Jan 2016 02:26:17 -0800

A technological innovation has made a huge difference to many of the disabled residents at St Teresa's Care Home in Penzance. A standing wheelchair has been bought to support the many wheelchair users at the Leonard Cheshire Disability home. With just ...

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