This last week has been a whirlwind of a week!
I have taken part in a radio interview and filmed with local BBC news. It was utterly nerve-wracking and I have been glad to have a quiet Sunday at home with the family to recover from the stresses. Unfortunately, I did not download the TV interview in time but BBC Spotlight are kindly going to try to send me a DVD. Adam was SO excited to see himself on the telly!
I have not personally had a response from Lands End but, after my post “Lands End is not for everyone” local media contacted me and highlighted the issue and, via BBC Spotlight, there was an apology and a statement that they will look into making their toilets accessible. Many people have commented that it was not the best of apologies but I would like everyone to give them the benefit of the doubt and they will hopefully show that they really do care by ensuring that their toilet facilities are improved. How fabulous would it be to have the westernmost Changing Places toilet or Space to Change toilet in the UK?
I am also hoping they will realise that it makes good business sense. Why exclude paying customers?
I am very thankful to Donna Birrell and Matt Shepherd at Radio Cornwall for making me feel so comfortable and for totally “getting” the issue. I was so nervous (and running late after meeting a lot of traffic) but they put me at ease straight away.
The Spotlight crew were equally wonderful. John and Tristan were great. Typically, Adam was just warming to them as it was time for them to leave!
On Friday, after a busy morning recording and a fun afternoon with friends, I returned to the most amazing news that The Lost Gardens of Heligan had been reading Ordinary Hopes and intend to update their toilet facilities to include a changing bench and ceiling hoist! That news truly did make my day, particularly after Lands End’s response and subsequent actions. Totally amazing! Adam is thrilled!
I also had a lovely e-mail from Wild Futures, a small monkey sanctuary in Looe. They came to me a short while ago, without being asked, because THEY CARE. The e-mail included this:-
“Our disabled toilets are currently up in the carpark, which again is not what we want, however we are nearly complete on a new toilet block down in the sanctuary to include a disabled toilet. Although that disabled toilet is still not adequate enough for a lot of people, which we know now thanks to you and your campaign, it is something we should already have been aware of, and I can only apologise for our ignorance with that.”
I am truly touched at the kind attitude of this small charity. I have also excitedly purchased a “monkey adoption” for Adam’s birthday next month. Maybe we will one day even visit his monkey!
We also managed a trip to the beach this week!
Not only did we visit the beach but we also joined in with an activity inspired by some of our friends, The Little Bucket Beach Clean Up. Every person really can make a difference in the world.
We made a difference at Portreath beach.
I was also asked to write for a website My Family, Our Needs and it was rather exciting to read my words on their page. Summer holidays are a difficult time but I am hoping that this summer will be the last difficult summer for any disabled child in Cornwall.
Businesses and attractions of Cornwall, I challenge you to step up and make a difference too! He is an ordinary boy. The need for a toilet with a hoist and bench should not stand between him and an ordinary life.