A NEW service which will help tackle loneliness and social isolation has launched in Barnstaple.
The Go Out and About service, run by Go North Devon (GND), is being hailed as a major milestone in the group's 20 year history.
GND launched the initiative following a review of its Ring and Ride service.
Manager, Sharon Lynch, said: "The main feedback we received from Ring and Ride clients was that they felt lonely and socially isolated with only shopping trips available to them.
"The new Go Out and About club service will start to help to address these issues."
The new service was officially launched at the Shopmobility Centre by Ring and Ride client, Pam Jenkins.
Pam said: "This new service will make such a difference to me and my fellow passengers as without this new service we would only be able to leave our homes once a week to go food shopping on the Ring and Ride minibus.
"I have already been on a few trips including a visit to Braunton for fish and chips and a visit to the museum. I am looking forward to going on many more trips in the future."
Funding for a new minibus was supported by the Rotary clubs of Barnstaple, Devon County Council's Sustainable Transport Fund and local people.
Grants were also awarded by the Big Lottery Awards for All scheme and Comic Relief to help with start-up costs, and the team received donations from local and national charitable trusts.
Trips lined up for the near future include a visit to Trago Mills and the Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery in Exeter.
For more information on the club, call into the Shopmobility Centre in Albert Lane or call 01271 328866.