Councillor to take part in ‘blindfold’ walk to highlight negative impact of street clutter on blind people

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Councillor Mick Legg is to take part in ‘blindfold’ walk to highlight negative impact of street clutter on blind and partially sighted people.

Mr Legg, the Milton Keynes Council Cabinet member for Public Realm, is taking part in the walk around Bletchley to highlight the challenges that blind and partially sighted people face when getting out and about in their local areas.

The blindfold walk takes place during a ‘Street Accessibility Fortnight of Action’, being run by RNIB (the Royal National Institute of Blind People), on Saturday, July, 25 at 11am.

The fortnight of action aims to highlight the growing problem of street obstacles including bollards, advertising boards, bins, cars parked on pavements, and ‘shared space’ schemes. Campaigners will be sharing their experiences and calling on local authorities to sit down with them and create a Street Charter for their area.

RNIB’s chief executive, Lesley-Anne Alexander, said: “If decision makers understand how blind and partially sighted people navigate the streets, and take that into consideration, they could help tackle one of the biggest barriers faced today by people with sight loss.

“We hope the fortnight of action will encourage local authorities to engage with blind and partially sighted people in their area and develop a ‘street charter’ that puts a clear highway policy at the heart of it.”

Padma Cheriyan, Milton Keynes Volunteer Campaign Coordinator for RNIB who set up the walk, said: “I am delighted that Councillor Legg has agreed to take part in the walk to highlight this important issue.

“I am registered blind myself and the number of parked cars and street clutter in Milton Keynes is a real problem. It can cause people who walk with a white cane or guide dog to walk into things and hurt themselves.”

The walk starts starts from the old Co-Op building in Queensway, Bletchley.