Wednesday, May 9

Access Forum

Today I went for a sort of interview with the Local Access Forum which covers the whole of Northumberland and the National Park as well. To be honest I was pretty rubbish, feeling fat, very pregnant and tired, so not at my sparkling best. So Id be amazed if they took me on. Oh well never mind there is always next year to apply.
I do get quite worked up about access issues though and it would be nice to get some input in somewhere. I mean think about it. How often do you see any disabled person in the countryside? Almost never, unless you count a group outing with carers. You certainly wont see anyone out with their family much that's for certain. I miss the countryside I really do. It has been lost to me for some time now and I only see it from the car and from a distance, but it could be made so much more accessible to wheelchair users and other disabled groups as well. I don't mean tarmac every path in sight, but certainly make some provision for wheelchair access. Northumberland does this by putting sand and gravel down all over the place and then calling it accessible. Oh yes they know what they're doing there that's for sure!!! Obviously they really need to look at that because I don't know how anyone can even think that's the case.
Id love to see more disabled people feeling as if they can venture out into the country and be confident and safe enough to do it. With some thought and creative thinking, most difficulties could be overcome in this area, but I guess a lot of agencies either pay lip service to the whole thing, or else just don't see the overall value of it.


  1. Lorraine - welcome to the world of local access forums. I was a member (in my wheelchair) of the Dorset Local Access Forum for four years, temporarily not a member (my choice) but intend to return as soon as possible.

    Have you had contact with the Disabled Ramblers - see link on right column on my page. They are leading the way in consultations on countryside access and are a great source of information and support.

    I do hope you get onto the forum - it is important for other members and local government officers, to be reminded that there is always a disabled presence that has to be taken into account in the decisions.

    Next you will be wanting a Tramper all terrain vehicle - with a baby buggy ! So, you must be really close to the big day now.

  2. Anonymous10:19

    Sod a Tramper, what you need is a Tank Chair: