Chesterfield MP walks round town blindfolded

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Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins walked around the town blindfolded to find out about everyday problems faced by the visually impaired.

Some of the issues highlighted during his walk ad through chats with guide dog users included obstacles on paths such as cars parked on pavements, advertising boards outside shops and street furniture.

The charity Guide Dogs is campaigning to raise awareness of these issues in a bid to encourage people to leave the pavements clear for pedestrians.

Kelly France, from Guide Dogs, said: “The pavement can be like a minefield at times, forcing people with sight loss to leave the safety of the pavement and walk into oncoming traffic due to cars parked on the footway.

“A guide dog can help someone to negotiate these obstacles but it can be a scary prospect to walk into the road when they don’t know if something is coming and when they shouldn’t have to.”

MP Toby Perkins added: “Street clutter is a real issue for people with disabilities like sight loss or need to use a wheelchair, it’s also problematic for parents with pushchairs and the elderly.”