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Child's adjustable walking aid, England, 1970-1985

Child's adjustable walking aid, England, 1970-1985

Credits: Science Museum

Designed like a four-footed crutch, this walking aid can be adjusted to suit children of different heights. The four rubber feet at the end of the aid give extra stability. The item was used at the Lord Mayor Treloar Orthopaedic Hospital in Alton, Hampshire, England. Founded in 1908, the hospital originally specialised in treating children with orthopaedic conditions primarily caused by tuberculosis and polio. By the 1970s, the hospital was treating more general orthopaedic cases. The walking aid was made by Ellis, Son & Paramore – a long established company who during the 1800s advertised themselves as “Artists in deformity”.

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Glossary: walking aid

A generic name given to a variety of tools to be held in the hand and used for support in walking, where the stick is usually held in the stronger hand. In addition to their use for people with weakened muscles, walking sticks also have become widely used by hikers, and have a limited association with Orthadox eccleasiastical bishops.