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Accessible loos

callassamyanzi Member Posts: 1 Listener
I’m a motorised wheelchair user and have just returned from a 3 day trip to London with my 13 year old son and a friend. We had a great time but my BUGBEAR (one of many!) is ‘accessible’ loos. 

I rely upon there being a horizontal grab rail on either side or the toilet, usually one drop down and the other fixed running along the wall, crucially not more than 9” away from the toilet and both at the same level!!  Also a must is enough space in front of the toilet to manoeuvre the chair opposite it or as near as possible opposite it (as a basin is usually there) for transfer. 

I went to The Tate Modern on Tuesday and  couldn’t use any of their toilets because of the very smart stylish square basin taking up too much space in front of the loo (it matched the square loo seat!). STYLE AT THE EXPENSE OF USERBILITY !

The Natural History Museum has several accessible toilets. However, the one near the main entrance has just one rail! Luckily after a lengthy trip through the crowds another by the Darwin centre was usable. 

The hotel - Premier Inn , Waterloo  tried to put me into a room with one loo grab rail, despite calling in advance stating my needs and then was told that this was standard - it’s not, as I’ve stayed in them before and they’ve been good. We were shown another accessible room and all was ok!  Two rails. 

The train journey (4 1/2 hrs) was frought with stress as the the ‘accessible’ toilet had only one rail so the train had to wait while I got off 
at Exeter station to use the (thank goodness usable) facilities. Luckily the trip home was easier as there were 2 rails.   THIS SHOULD BE STANDARD AND NOT A LOTTERY !

I would be interested in hearing from any of you with similar experiences with grab rail issues etc. 

Best wishes 


  • Adam_Alumni
    Adam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 164 Pioneering

    Hi @callassamyanzi

    Thank you for joining the community and for sharing your story with us today.

    I'm sorry to hear that you have had such a tough time finding suitable facilities for your needs, but I am glad it didn't spoil your trip too much!

    I am sure that many of our members will be able to sympathise with you and some will have had similar experiences that they can share with you!

  • Richard_Scope
    Richard_Scope Posts: 3,115

    Scope community team

    Hi @callassamyanzi
    It can be really annoying and frustrating when you eventually find a loo and low and behold the accessibility isn't there. I would advise that you email the places you visited to make them aware of the difficulties that you faced when trying to use their facilities.
    Specialist Information Officer and Cerebral Palsy Programme Lead

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