A wheelchair-bound Sheffield woman has launched a campaign to improve the condition of pavements in her area.
Jane Hurst, from Gleadless, was inspired to launch ‘Access All Areas’ after her worsening multiple sclerosis forced her into a wheelchair a year ago.
“I had no idea just how bad the pavements were until I ventured out in the wheelchair,” said Jane, aged 50, who worked as a probation officer until her illness forced her to take early retirement last year.
Jane claims she has fallen from her wheelchair twice in the past few months due to poor pavement conditions and insufficient drop kerbs on Carson Mount where she lives.
“I fell flat on my face both times – they were bad falls,” she said.
“The last time I crushed my glasses and broke the arm off the chair. I shouldn’t be having to endure a white-knuckle ride every time I nip to the shops.”
Jane contacted Sheffield Council who sent officers to investigate - and reported that, aside from a few small areas they intended to patch up, the pavements were ‘suitable for public use’.
“Am I not public? Because they’re not suitable for me!” insisted Jane.
“I’m not willing to wait until 2016 when, I’m told, the next lot of work is scheduled for Gleadless.”
Coun Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for street scene, said: “We know the condition of roads and pavements across the city is an issue for many people.
“Our Streets Ahead project is improving the condition of the city’s roads and pavements, but this is a huge project and the work can’t be carried out overnight.
“We’re asking for the public’s understanding.”