Plea from disability groups over access to kerbs in Gosport

CAMPAIGN From left, Charlie Reilly, Jeanette Perry, and Jim Morey, who want more drop kerbs to be either repaired or installed in Gosport '''''''''                Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142706-3)
CAMPAIGN From left, Charlie Reilly, Jeanette Perry, and Jim Morey, who want more drop kerbs to be either repaired or installed in Gosport ''''''''' Picture: Ian Hargreaves (142706-3)
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DISABILITY campaigners are fighting for better roads in Gosport.

Members of the town’s disability and access forum have said drivers need to stop blocking drop-kerbs.

Jeanette Perry, campaign, leader, said misaligned drop-kerbs are also problem.

She said: ‘We’ll have a drop-kerb on one side of the road and we won’t have one on the opposite side.

‘We can go down one side but we’ll have to go on the road to find another.

‘We’re also having lots of problems where kerbs are high, that causes problems with wheelchairs being bounced around quite a lot.

‘It’s not just us it’s also mums with pushchairs.’

Hampshire County Council, which maintains the roads in Gosport, has agreed to install drop-kerbs at three places after the campaign.

A spokeswoman said on average it costs around £300 to install a drop-kerb.

The News met with campaigners in Old Road, Gosport, where they pointed out a high kerb, which people with mobility or sight problems find difficult to tackle.

In the same road, drivers had blocked a drop-kerb with a car and another drop-kerb was not flush with the road.

Visually-impaired Jim Morey, from the forum, said new developments can also cause problems.

‘If there’s a new development put in one side of the road, there’s not something put in the other side,’ he said.

Charlie Reilly, of Old Road, said the problem across Gosport was bad and she had seen a person in a mobility scooter tipped over because of the poor road surface.

The 33-year-old, who walks with a stick, said: ‘I hardly go out sometimes. I wait for my husband to help me.’

Campaigners have asked for white bars to be painted at kerbs in Williams Close and Cornwell Close in Rowner to stop drivers parking there.

Other problems include steep crossings at Haslar Road at its junction with South Street.

Campaigners have even asked the county authority if a worker will go out on a mobility scooter to see the problems for themselves.

The invitation has not yet been accepted.

Councillor Sean Woodward, county executive member for transport, thanked the forum for raising the issues.

He said: ‘We pride ourselves in making sure everyone can move around as safely as possible.’