Accessible Vehicle and Equipment Scheme quarterly meeting group minutes: December 2022

Minutes from the meeting of the group on 9 December 2022.

Attendees and apologies

Attendees from the Scottish Government 

  • Margaret Grigor (Chair), Service Manager, Common Processes Delivery Team
  • David George, Disability Benefits Team Leader
  • Gordon Dawson, Product Owner, Common Processes and Delivery Team
  • Keith Miller, Product Lead, Common Processes and Delivery Team
  • Hannah Gascoigne, Policy Officer
  • Tasneem Irshad, Policy Officer

Attendees from Motability and Motability Operations

  • Andrew Miller, CEO, Motability Operations
  • Barry Le Grys, Motability
  • Ian Goswell, Motability Operations
  • Michelle Vellacott, Motability Operations


  • Nikola Plunkett, Scottish Government 

Items and actions


The Chair welcomed members to the fifth Accessible Vehicle and Equipment (AVE) Scheme quarterly meeting.

Ratification of previous meeting minutes and update on action points

The Chair ratified the Minutes of the previous meeting. No further comments on action points. Gordon Dawson and Michelle Vellacott were keen to stress that knowledge exchange had been ongoing with Motability personnel taking the organisational lead. Gordon stated that he would communicate with David Hall with regards to issues arising from the contract.  

Action 1: Gordon Dawson to communicate with David Hall with regards to any issues arising from the contract.

Update on delivery of interface

Gordon Dawson updated the team confirming that the interfaces in question had been delivered successfully. There had been some minor issues with updating parent/guardian details for child disability payments in between the Motability and Scottish Government interfaces, in addition to updates about a change in circumstance.  Michelle Vellacott raised concerns that Agency may not have the in-depth knowledge to take on full responsibility after the interface is transferred, but Margaret Grigor assured her that they will continue to work with Agency to ensure a smooth transition, and that she is prioritising identifying a named person who will act as a contact for any queries. 

Action 2: Margaret Grigor to identify a contact and invite them to the next quarterly meeting

Update on transition to Social Security Scotland

Plans to introduce AVE lease payments directly from Social Security Scotland and not via the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have been discussed with Motability who feel there will be no impact upon their operations. Stephen French is leading from Programme and Ciaran Dowling and Chris Sallas had been consulted from Motability. Gordon Dawson confirmed that operational timescales were being met.  Ian Goswell felt that some clarity would be required both from within Motability and Programme to ensure a smooth transition process. 

Barry Le Grys and Andrew Miller suggested that Motability could work with Social Security Scotland to ensure a smoother process for transition such as invoicing.  Gordon Dawson would locate an infographic which would provide information on points of contact in this process, to ensure they had sufficient information about the new payments process from their staff and programme.

Action 3: Gordon Dawson to share with Michelle Vellacott a finance infographic for their information.

Action 4: Motability to ensure they have sufficient information about the new payments process from their staff as well as Programme.

Update on AVE Accreditation Scheme

Tasneem Irshad updated the meeting with regards to the upcoming accreditation application window. Applications will be open from 16 January to 24 February 2023. The revised scheme rules are expected to be published week commencing 19 December 2022. 


Case transfer

David George updated the meeting with regards to issues faced by some clients who sign-up to a Motability lease during the case transfer window from DWP and, are unable to take ownership of their vehicles until payments have transitioned to Social Security Scotland. Michelle Vellacott confirmed that Motability was able to deal with these cases manually as numbers were low at this moment. 

There is a potential issue with a small number of people who were transferred back to DWP instead of Social Security Scotland, due to an issue with the automation system which would need to be resolved. David George confirmed that he would keep the situation under review whilst being happy to support Motability.

Experience Panel research on the Accessible Vehicles and Equipment Scheme - Overview of findings from survey

David Anderson briefly shared the findings of the survey where 75% of respondents had used the Motability scheme. Feedback for the scheme was very positive with 89% rating their experiences as being “very good” or “good”, and that having access to a vehicle allowed disabled people to become more independent. These findings were positively received by both Motability and Scottish Government colleagues.  

Motability Operations update

Andrew Miller led the update and began by saying that the increase in profits in Motability Operations’ forthcoming financial results is largely driven by price increases in the used car market. Motability Operations noted they are actively reinvesting profits to absorb the impact of inflation and running costs. 

Motability will be providing an increased New Vehicle Payment of £750, allocating £645 million towards protecting affordability and donating £200 million to the Motability Charity to support disabled people with their mobility. 

Motability Operations are increasing their range of electric cars as well as increasing the number of domestic charging points. There has been a strategic focus on increased funding for research and development collaborations with institutions, especially in terms of updating the design of wheelchair accessible vehicles to allow for conversion to electric. 

Motability Operations also noted they are developing plans for ‘vehicle to grid’ schemes where excess electrical capacity in vehicles can be transferred back into the grid. 

Motability Charity update

Barry Le Grys updated the meeting with regards to the Motability charity. He cited a customer satisfaction rate of approximately 93% with services that Motability have provided. Demand for means-tested grants have increased by 50% and will continue to increase in the coming years with the average grant amount being £3,500. 

Motability are also making grants to other organisations to support disabled people. So far in the 2022/23 financial year-to-date they paid grants of £300,000 to the Brittle Bones Society (Dundee) for wheelchairs and £147,000 to Interloch Community Transport (Kilmum) to assist them in making their transport accessible to disabled people.

AOB and close

Next Quarterly meeting will be in March 2023 at Motability’s offices in South Gyle.

Action 6: Officials to contact Motability and SG colleagues with dates.

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