Bradford blind people raise A-boards complaints

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Emerson Walgrove, of Bradford and District Disabled People’s Forum, with one of the A-Boards which he says are a hazard to the blind or partially sighted people and aren't always in the same place each day Emerson Walgrove, of Bradford and District Disabled People’s Forum, with one of the A-Boards which he says are a hazard to the blind or partially sighted people and aren't always in the same place each day

Pavement clutter such as A-boards and shop displays are a major problem for blind and disabled people in the district, Bradford Council has been warned.

Now, following a forthright debate during a health and social care overview and scrutiny committee meeting, the Council’s executive will be asked to decide whether obstructions should be removed all together.

Councillors on the committee agreed to pass the matter to the executive for review and chairman Councillor Mike Gibbons said: “We must ensure this Council uses its best resources to bring about change. It is a widespread problem. We will do our best to take it as far as we possibly can.”

One woman, a wheelchair user, told the meeting: “Put yourself in our position. Close your eyes and try to get around Bradford.”

A blind man said: “This has been going on for years and years. Getting around has been getting more and more difficult.

“Give us back our pavements. We have got to come back to saying nothing on the pavement. Fudge rules mean costing money, time and discussions.

“Get a ruling in place. There’s no need for shoe racks, bike racks, cars or vans.

“You spend all your life running round trying to enforce things. It’s about time this Council and other councils got the law changed to give the pavements back for the users.”

Richard Gelder, transportation development manager at the Council, said: “It is a constant procession of going out to speak to the business owner, having a word, and the board being moved. But it is soon back again.

“We don’t have a three strikes and out policy because legislation doesn’t allow that. People can move a display and the clock starts again for them.

“In the last eight weeks we have been to one shop 51 times. They move their A-board but as soon as our back is turned the A-board goes back.”

Susan Crowe, of the Strategic Disability Partnership, said: “We need a three strikes and you’re out amendment to policy so that prolific offenders are removed.”

Coun Jeanette Sunderland (Lib Dem, Idle and Thackley) said: “The A-boards are the bigger menace, the joker in the pack. One day they are in one place, one day they are in another.

“I would see the back of A-boards completely. They distract and disturb.

“Leave shop displays alone at this moment and tackle A-boards.”

Emmerson Walgrove, deputy chairman of the Bradford and District Disabled People’s Forum, said: “We support the decision by the committee to refer this matter to the executive.

“We believe that there is no need for shops or any other store to use A-boards, which cause serious problems for people who are visual-impaired or in a wheelchair as the pavements are not accessible for them, meaning they are being discriminated against.

“But it has to be also noted that there are many other, sometimes temporary, obstructions that can cause problems for disabled people, particularly those with visual impairments. Refuse bins, sand sculptures, vehicles and bicycles parked on pavements are all potential hazards.”

Comments (5)

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7:14am Tue 11 Feb 14

Albion. says...

In some areas (Oak Lane comes to mind) even sighted people find negotiating their way past pavement obstacle courses difficult.
In some areas (Oak Lane comes to mind) even sighted people find negotiating their way past pavement obstacle courses difficult. Albion.
  • Score: 4

1:28pm Tue 11 Feb 14

The Hoffster says...

Albion. wrote:
In some areas (Oak Lane comes to mind) even sighted people find negotiating their way past pavement obstacle courses difficult.
Be quiet, Islamophobe.
[quote][p][bold]Albion.[/bold] wrote: In some areas (Oak Lane comes to mind) even sighted people find negotiating their way past pavement obstacle courses difficult.[/p][/quote]Be quiet, Islamophobe. The Hoffster
  • Score: -5

4:01pm Tue 11 Feb 14

Steve30d says...

Albion. wrote:
In some areas (Oak Lane comes to mind) even sighted people find negotiating their way past pavement obstacle courses difficult.
Occasionally In the city center but more frequently away from it from there's also the problem of cars regularly parking on and blocking pavements so their mates can drive up double park next to them, and they can talk through the windows without getting out of their seats. Anyone attempting to use the pavement has to walk around both cars in the middle of the road, and often faces a barrage of abuse for simply being there.

Maybe those drivers are being dodgy, maybe they're just don't give a fig about anyone else, but being utter prats should be the quickest way to attract unwelcome attention from the police etc for inconsiderate parking, that's often dangerous.
[quote][p][bold]Albion.[/bold] wrote: In some areas (Oak Lane comes to mind) even sighted people find negotiating their way past pavement obstacle courses difficult.[/p][/quote]Occasionally In the city center but more frequently away from it from there's also the problem of cars regularly parking on and blocking pavements so their mates can drive up double park next to them, and they can talk through the windows without getting out of their seats. Anyone attempting to use the pavement has to walk around both cars in the middle of the road, and often faces a barrage of abuse for simply being there. Maybe those drivers are being dodgy, maybe they're just don't give a fig about anyone else, but being utter prats should be the quickest way to attract unwelcome attention from the police etc for inconsiderate parking, that's often dangerous. Steve30d
  • Score: 6

4:03pm Tue 11 Feb 14

bruce47 says...

Never mind A-boards! What about wheelie bins (for example those left permanently on the pavement outside the Ingrow Lane apartment block) ?
Over to you council!

Bruce Holmes
Ingrow Lane
Never mind A-boards! What about wheelie bins (for example those left permanently on the pavement outside the Ingrow Lane apartment block) ? Over to you council! Bruce Holmes Ingrow Lane bruce47
  • Score: 2

4:05pm Tue 11 Feb 14

bruce47 says...

What about wheelie bins? For example those permanently left on the pavement outside the Apartments on Ingrow Lane! Sort it!
What about wheelie bins? For example those permanently left on the pavement outside the Apartments on Ingrow Lane! Sort it! bruce47
  • Score: 3

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