Access to shops, what makes a door accessible? — Scope | Disability forum
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Access to shops, what makes a door accessible?

Edwardflik Member Posts: 2 Listener
Hi.  I am campaigning to get shops to close their doors to conserve heat, not waste energy and needlessly add to greenhouse gas emissions. The most common response I receive is that the are open to allow for wheelchair and pushchair access. I would be grateful to receive the views of wheelchair users and others on this issue.


  • steve51
    steve51 Member Posts: 7,154 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Edwardflik

    Good Morning & Welcome it’s great to meet you today.

    I am one of the Community Champion’s here at Scope.

    Yes I’m a electric wheelchair user I find automatic doors are the best way for me.

    This way is the best all around to be honest.

    I do find manual doors impossible to use so I keep away all of the time.

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,416 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi and welcome,

    I'm one of the community champions here on scope and i'm here to help and advise others.

    As a disabled person who uses a small mobility scooter when i go out and a mum to 3 children, who have all grown up now. I have experience on both parts of this. I'm sorry but i have to agree with the response that you've already received. A door to a shop being left open is very helpful to parents with pushchairs and those with mobility issues.

    It's also very helpful to those who don't have mobility problems. Some people find using their arms and hands to open the doors extremely difficult because some of those doors are just so heavy.

    Even with the doors kept shut you still have the issue of the automatic doors, which of course are constantly opening and closing.

    For all of these reasons then i'm sorry but you wouldn't have my support with your campaign but i do wish you good luck.
  • Edwardflik
    Edwardflik Member Posts: 2 Listener
  • steve51
    steve51 Member Posts: 7,154 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Edwardflik

    No Probs it’s my Pleasure my Friend.

  • Ails
    Ails Member Posts: 2,256 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Edwardflik and welcome to the Community.  It is nice to meet you and thank you for sharing with us.  I too use my wheelchair outdoors and sometimes my mobility scooter to get into shops and I also find it so much easier for the doors to be left open as I struggle to open doors myself, so if they are open it is a godsend to me and I can access the shop without anyone's help.  Even better if they are automatic doors too.  So I am all for shops keeping their doors open for disabled people and people with prams.  I do appreciate your campaign though and what you are trying to do and wish you all the very best with it.  :smile:
    Winner of the Scope New Volunteer Award 2019.   :)
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 15,106 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Edwardflik and welcome to the community. Nice to meet you and find your post interesting. As a wheelchair user I do agree with the comments others have made. There are only a few shops which are accessible to wheelchair users so those that are it makes life so much easier if doors are automatic or left open as it isn't easy to open doors from a wheelchair or even if somenone is pushing the wheelchair it is hard for them to open the door and push you through as well, and often rely on help from some kindly person within the shop.
  • Chloe_Scope
    Chloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,557 Disability Gamechanger
    Welcome to the community @Edwardflik! Thank you for discussing this and I hope we are able to help. :)

  • Adrian_Scope
    Adrian_Scope Posts: 8,553

    Scope community team

    Really interesting discussion @Edwardflik. I know when using a pushchair it can be difficult to navigate closed shop doors, especially if they're heavy. Usually the only option is to go backwards.
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  • newborn
    newborn Member Posts: 741 Pioneering
    Automatic is best. I agree about the environment problem.  
  • newborn
    newborn Member Posts: 741 Pioneering
    My question is what  happens in fire? If automatic doors don't work,  or if lifts don't,  or if the fire doors which are normally  left open are triggered to shut, will the weakest be left to incinerate?

    I never saw a lift without the  notice forbidding use in event of fire. Nor, even in hospital,  a suggestion of the alternative way to escape,  for those unable to race downstairs. 
  • April2018mom
    April2018mom Posts: 2,868 Connected
    That is a excellent question @newborn

    Nowadays most buildings are equipped with evacuation chairs. Ask about them. We recently had lunch one day at a local cafe downtown just after Christmas and as I walked with my son wheeling himself to the lift, I noticed there was a evacuation chair in case of emergencies only. Your local hospital definitely should also have at least one. It is a legal requirement. 
  • newborn
    newborn Member Posts: 741 Pioneering
    April thanks. Evac chairs are a good idea......but not if locked in a cupboard,   and not if staff are not trained  to  use them or have  never heard of them or have not been firetrained and drilled to the point they know exactly who has responsibility to do what. 

    It is useless if there once was training,  and a chair, but now all the staff who used to know have left, and the chair is lost, or locked up, or in disrepair.    
  • laura222
    laura222 Member Posts: 84 Pioneering
    Hi @Edwardflik

    Great campaign! Wonderful that you're trying to consider as many users as possible. Hooray for environmental health and inclusive design going hand in hand!

    I echo @Steve51's comments. I use a power-chair and have low upper-body strength so automatic doors are always a delight.
  • pollyanna1052
    pollyanna1052 Member Posts: 2,032 Disability Gamechanger
    Automatic or open doors are right for me too. I rarely need to ask for help as I usually have a carer with me.


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