Awareness raising day in Gravesend

Member of Parliament for Gravesham, Adam Holloway, the mayor, local councillors and many staff from Kent County Council took part in an awareness raising day in Gravesend. Gravesend access group supported by Guide Dogs for the blind and Kent association for the blind met with the local MP, councillors including Tanmanjeet Dhesi and John Caller and the mayor along with members from Kent libraries and Kent County Council highways department.

Exercises under blindfold were conducted by Guide Dogs around the town centre using sighted guiding and dogs in training. Kent association for the blind also demonstrated and supervised exercises with the long cane. The aim of the day was to raise awareness of access issues in the town. These include things like street clutter i.e. a-boards and café furniture making it difficult for visually impaired people to navigate the high street safely and the removal of kerbs making it impossible to distinguish between the footway and the carriageway.

Wheelchair exercises took place with Gravesend access group to demonstrate how bad design and poorly maintained pavements can make navigating the high street and accessing surrounding shops difficult.

Issues for blind and partially sighted people and wheelchair users in and around Gravesend town centre were discussed at length. The day was a success with positive feedback from the participants involved. Hopefully, the needs of wheelchair users and visually impaired travellers will be considered in future town planning and design decisions.

 



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MP Adam Holloway doing a blindfold Dog walk with GDMI Jennifer Crane

MP Adam Holloway doing a blindfold dog walk with GDMI Jennifer Crane


Mayor of Gravesend John Caller doing sighted guide with My Guide ambassador Cassi Moss

Mayor of Gravesend John Caller doing sighted guide with My Guide ambassador Cassi Moss


Councillor Tanmanjeet Dhesi doing a blindfold dog walk with GDMI Jennifer Crane

Councillor Tanmanjeet Dhesi doing a blindfold dog walk with GDMI Jennifer Crane