Disabled Access Issues – Redlees Park

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Blantyre Telegraph has learned of a shocking story of obstruction into one of the town’s Parks, which left a disabled lady rightly angry and upset.

Yesterday afternoon, Sunday 29th April 2018, wanting to enjoy the sunshine, Blantyre couple Mr & Mrs Smith took a trip to Redlees Urban Park, just off Blantyreferme Road. However, their pleasant afternoon soon turned into a nightmare.

Mrs Smith, is disabled and a wheelchair user. After leaving the carpark, the couple found that a deep gully or trench caused a complete obstruction on the pathway, stretching from one side to the other. The red gravel path is hard enough for wheelchairs to manoeuvre at the best of times and in a sorry state, but this added obstacle caused the greatest problem as Mr Smith awkwardly tried to push his wife’s chair safely.

Chair Toppled

Their intention was to get to the sitting area next to the pond and the chair had to be adjusted constantly at awkward angles. Then the worst thing happened. The chair toppled into the gully, throwing Mrs Smith from it to the ground.

Mr Douglas McArthur and his wife, a passing couple approached to assist after witnessing the event. Mrs Smith was thankfully fine and assisted back into her chair.

Passer by Douglas told us, “To see this man’s loving tenuous effort in getting his wife to a location so easy for able people such as myself, was shameful to witness. This gully has been worn away over the last year or so, as I have witnessed regularly, but stepped over it many times thinking nothing of it, until this incident.”

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With permission, Douglas took this photo of Mr. and Mrs. Smith of Blantyre and the gully and promised to highlight the issue at this lovely local site, where so much money has been spent on creating such an excellent area for all to enjoy.

Call for help

This article is ultimately intended for South Lanarkshire Council and asks kindly for urgent intervention from The Parks Dept and/or from Councillors to intervene. If this gully is to serve as drainage or has some other unfinished purpose, it should be filled in and created alongside the path as soon as possible.

Meantime, anybody using the park, whether able bodied or not, should take care of this bizarre trip hazard to prevent any similar occurrences.

Photos Courtesy: D McArthur

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