Blind Veterans UK Research

We have continued to grow our research and innovation activities over the past year.

Whether looking into the effects of sight loss on sleep patterns, the impact of driverless vehicles in transporting our veterans, or the implications Virtual Reality (VR) technology can have for the blind, all our activities are aimed at improving the lives of the veterans we support.

Sleep patterns and sight loss

We've teamed up with the University of Oxford to look at how sight loss affects sleep patterns (circadian rhythms). Together, we are running a study in which veterans take part to find out more about this complex subject.

Arthur our Driverless Pod

Working with the driverless vehicle company Aurrigo, we launched a trial of driverless pods at our training and rehabilitation centre in Brighton. This trial, which is still ongoing, is the first one ever conducted with veterans or people with a disability, the results will have huge implications for those who can no longer drive.

Not being able to drive is one of the key factors in creating a sense of isolation in our veterans. To many, it's akin to losing your independence, and is one of the most significant things to those affected by sight loss.

The first trial globally

The first blind veteran to take part in the trial was 51-year-old Mark Threadgold from Saltdean in East Sussex. Mark lost his sight entirely in 1999 and has been supported by Blind Veterans UK ever since.

“Being able to make more journeys on your own independently would be absolutely fantastic and open up the world for blind and disabled people everywhere."
Mark Threadgold