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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.

757 news items

The Guardian

The Guardian
Mon, 28 Sep 2015 02:46:24 -0700

Leonard Cheshire Disability tests models of inclusion like these in Zimbabwe to pave the way for larger programmes by local and national governments. David Cameron repeated the UK government's commitment to “leave no one behind” at the UN Summit ...

Hunts Post

Hunts Post
Tue, 29 Sep 2015 00:30:00 -0700

Leonard Cheshire Disability manages a home in Brampton and helps disabled people to live as independently as possible. Mr Djanogly joked that he was persuaded to take on the marathon in Amsterdam as a friend had told him that the course was “pretty ...


Fri, 25 Sep 2015 07:45:26 -0700

Researchers at the Leonard Cheshire Disability and Inclusive Development Center are helping to shape global thinking on this. The data collected to monitor progress must reflect the ambition of the SDGs. If not, our best opportunity yet to ensure ...


Fri, 25 Sep 2015 07:37:30 -0700

Leonard Cheshire Disability, a leading disability charity which supports thousands of people with disabilities across the globe, is one of the organisations supporting the new initiative. The charity believes the new agenda could transform the lives ...

Grimsby Telegraph

Grimsby Telegraph
Thu, 08 Oct 2015 01:25:34 -0700

The aim is to get half-a-million Scouts to volunteer for some of the UK's biggest charities, including Mind, Alzheimer's Society, WaterAid, Guide Dogs, The Canal & River Trust and Leonard Cheshire Disability. Together, we'll be tackling four issues ...
Mon, 28 Sep 2015 08:22:30 -0700

The event hosted at the Acacia Premier Hotel saw the attendance of award-winning photographer Axel Fassio, UK parliamentary advocacy officer Anna Gelderd, Leonard Cheshire Disability's global alliance manager Aletheia Brigh Flower, Results UK head ...


Wed, 07 Oct 2015 16:26:15 -0700

The new campaign aims to recruit half a million Scouts to volunteer to help, and learn about, some of the UK's biggest charities, including Mind, Alzheimer's Society, WaterAid, Guide Dogs, The Canal and River Trust and Leonard Cheshire Disability.


Wed, 07 Oct 2015 02:03:49 -0700

... Leonard Cheshire Disability charity, to create artwork which would brighten up the learning space. For more information on the project visit https://www.leonardcheshire.org/what-we-do/work-and-skills/can-do-volunteer-opportunities-for-disabled-people#.

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