Celebration to pay tribute to John Evans OBE

read content
January 17, 2014 - 12:00 am

Celebration to pay tribute to John Evans OBE – Marking the 30th anniversary of the start of the Independent Living Movement in the UK

Friday 17th January 2014

In December 1983 John Evans left Le Court, a Cheshire Home in Liss, Hampshire (UK) to live in his own home, with support from paid Personal Assistants. This effectively marked the start of the Independent Living Movement in the UK.

Over the 30 years that have passed since then John Evans has devoted his life to promoting Independent Living and Disability Rights, throughout the UK and Europe, as well playing an active role in the movement across the world.

John Evans DSC02386

This event has been organised as a tribute to that work and to mark the 30-year anniversary of the hugely important events in 1983. It charts the journey that both the Independent Living Movement, and John himself, have made over those 30 years, from the early days in a residential care home at Le Court, where the seeds of Independent Living in the UK were first sown, to Strasbourg, where John and other activists from across Europe regularly gather to campaign for Disabled People’s rights to Independent Living and inclusion.

The event included a presentation to John Evans OBE, and speeches made in honour of John Evans from Leading Disabled People and Independent Living advocates from across Europe, Including:

  • Philip Mason MBE: Founder member of Project 81
  • Sue Bott CBE: Policy Director, Disability Rights UK
  • Ruth Dixon: Deputy Director, Hampshire County Council
  • Baroness (Jane) Campbell of Surbiton
  • Martin Naughton: European Network on Independent Living
  • Judy Heumann: Special Advisor for International Disability Rights, U.S. State Department
  • Ian Loynes: Chief Executive SPECTRUM CIL

John Evans Celebration 2

We have produced a special document – ‘From Le Court to Strasbourg’ – to mark the 30-year anniversary of the hugely important events in 1983. It charts the journey that both the Independent Living Movement, and John Evans himself (and others), have made over those 30 years, from the early days in a residential care home at Le Court, where the seeds of Independent Living in the UK were first sown, to Strasbourg, where John and other activists from across Europe regularly gather to campaign for Disabled People’s rights to Independent Living and inclusion. You can download it here:

From Le Court to Strasbourg (2)

We have also written a newsletter article about the event, with contributions from John Evans and various other people who have been involved with the development of Independent Living over the past 30 years. You can read it here:

IL 30 year article for January 14 Newsletter