"We are delighted to be working with Entertainment Rights, producers of Postman Pat, Special Delivery Service. We are very pleased to see that Lizzy's circumstance has been reflected in an honest and believable manner. We are also pleased that the producers have managed to convey the tremendous spirit, determination, and drive that many young people with spinal cord injuries demonstrate.”
The National Spinal Injuries Centre at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, near Aylesbury, was established in 1944 to treat armed forces personnel who had sustained spinal cord injuries in the Second World War. Prior to this the majority of patients with such injuries died within a year of injury.
The centre was founded by Sir Ludwig Guttmann, a neurologist. He began using sport as a key part of the rehabilitation of patients, and organised a competition for 16 paralysed men and women to coincide with the Opening Ceremony of the 1948 Olympic Games in London. The Stoke Mandeville Games for wheelchair athletes was born, and soon became an international movement which gave rise to today's Paralympic Games.
In 1983 the centre moved to its current purpose built accommodation following a £10m fundraising drive spearheaded by our patron, Sir Jimmy Savile. The new unit was opened by HRH The Prince of Wales.
In 2005 we became one of the first units in the country to offer dedicated care for children with spinal cord injuries with the opening of St Francis Ward.
Today the centre, part of Buckinghamshire Hospitals NHS Trust, boasts an international reputation for the treatment and management of patients with spinal cord injury.
Looking to the future, fundraising is currently underway towards creating a new £1m research centre of excellence, the Stoke Mandevillle Spinal Foundation.