As a manual wheelchair user I have recently discovered train travel and how it can go really well but also
the pitfalls that can happen.
Zippy and I go out on adventures together. September 2018 was our first adventure on a train together to London. November 2018 was another trip to London this did not go according to plan and Zippy’s brakes ended up broken.
Instead of being full of anger and being proactive I told the story of what had happened to West Midlands Railways and Virgin. By doing that I am currently a volunteer who attends Strategy Equality Group meetings in Birmingham to help West Midlands Railways improve services for all.
Instead of moaning and complaining and not doing anything to resolve issues I have been invited to,
and attended the West Midlands Railways Stakeholder Equality Group (SEG) in Birmingham. Here I
raise awareness of issues that I notice that not only people with disabilities face but also those with
young children and prams. There are so many stations that have problems with regards to access.
This means many passengers have to alight off one train and get another to return to the platform
on the other side so that they can access a ramp with large suitcases, prams, buggies or wheelchairs.
I hope that by raising the issues that rail companies and network rail will work together to ensure all
stations are accessible in the future. It all comes into five year plans.
It is not all negative there are some great initiatives being developed to assist passengers.
So watch this space for progress. There will be plenty in due course.
I have written this blog about my experiences.