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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 £154 million, placing it in the top 40 of UK charities.[1]


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.[2]

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.[3] By 1992 there were 270 homes in 49 countries.[4]

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.[5]


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."[6]


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.[7]

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.[8]

Related organisations[edit]

The Ryder-Cheshire Foundation[9] 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[10]
  • the prevention and treatment of tuberculosis, through Target Tuberculosis.[11]

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).[12] 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.[13]

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.[14]

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]

Cheshire Home, Chung Hom Kok


  1. ^ "Top 10 charities by income". Charity Commission. Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  2. ^ "Press release". 
  3. ^ Chennai news
  4. ^ 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
  5. ^ "Global Alliance - Leonard Cheshire Disability". Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  6. ^ "Charity Commission for England and Wales: Charity Number 218186". Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  7. ^ Leonard Cheshire Disability
  8. ^ http://www.lcdisability.org/?lid=14883 2010 Ability Media International Awards
  9. ^ Charity Commission for England and Wales: Charity Number 285746
  10. ^ Registered Charity No. 1088623 Ryder-Cheshire Volunteers
  11. ^ Registered Charity No. 1098752 Target Tuberculosis
  12. ^ Leonard Cheshire Disability & Inclusive Development Centre
  13. ^ The Raphael Pilgrimage was later constituted as a registered charity: The Raphael Pilgrimage, Registered Charity no. 1098328 at the Charity Commission .
  14. ^ Ranked by expenditure. Source: Charities Direct: Top 500 Charities - Expenditure
  15. ^ '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.
26373 videos foundNext > 

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 ...

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 ...

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. http://www.lcdisability.org.

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 ...

Varsity Match 2014 - Leonard Cheshire Disability

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

Steps (India) - Leonard Cheshire Disability Young Voices

A film by Yellamma Gangadhar, a participant in the Leonard Cheshire Disability Young Voices project from India. Young Voices is a project of the Leonard ...

Leonard Cheshire Disability Young Voices Project in China

Young voices is a project of the Cheshire Global Alliance and Cheshire countries are encouraged to initiate activities which will be supported by the global ...

Supporting disabled people to work - Leonard Cheshire Disability

http://www.leonardcheshire.org/workandskills - We provide disabled people with a wide variety of training, resources and support into employment. Find out how ...

No Limits - 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 1950s. The unit was ...

Leonard Cheshire Disability Young Voices Project in China

Young voices is a project of the Cheshire Global Alliance and Cheshire countries are encouraged to initiate activities which will be supported by the global ...

26373 videos foundNext > 

770 news items

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 ...

Daily Mail

Daily Mail
Mon, 24 Aug 2015 16:28:54 -0700

But Andy Cole, campaigns director at Leonard Cheshire Disability, said the existing tests classified too many people as being ready to return to work. He acknowledged that campaigners recognised the value of work, however, adding: 'Any measures that ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Thu, 20 Aug 2015 14:04:32 -0700

The charity Leonard Cheshire Disability also warned of declining standards “and in some places declining safety”. Its chief executive, Claire Pelham, said:”This is not just a challenge for councils and care providers. It is especially challenging for ...
PR Week
Sun, 17 May 2015 23:11:52 -0700

Leonard Cheshire Disability, the UK's largest voluntary sector provider of services for disabled people, has appointed Macmillan Cancer Support head of public affairs Gus Baldwin to a new, expanded corporate affairs role. News · Tweet ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Mon, 10 Aug 2015 05:25:47 -0700

Clare Pelham, chief executive of Leonard Cheshire Disability: “The remarks by Andrea Sutcliffe ... mark a turning point. There are many reasons why care might not always be as good as it should be. There has been a proper focus on frontline care staff.

BBC News

BBC News
Fri, 21 Aug 2015 18:39:27 -0700

Andy Cole of disability charity Leonard Cheshire Disability said blue badges were "a lifeline for millions of disabled people to ensure that they can maintain their independence". He added: "It is shocking that some people steal or feel that it is ...

Huffington Post UK

Huffington Post UK
Thu, 06 Aug 2015 03:21:22 -0700

Barely one in three Tube stations have step-free access of any kind, the infographic from Leonard Cheshire Disability reveals. One of the worst is the Central line, where one in ten stations can be used - while the Waterloo and City line can't be ...

Hartlepool Mail

Hartlepool Mail
Tue, 18 Aug 2015 01:37:30 -0700

Nine years ago, I set up the Stelios Award for Disabled Entrepreneurs with the charity, Leonard Cheshire Disability. It was to recognise the many talented, ambitious and inspiring disabled people who have set up their own businesses. I'm calling for ...

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