Brake finds out difficulties of living with arthritis

May 30, 2007 12:00 AM

On Friday 25th May, Tom Brake MP (Carshalton and Wallington) found out how difficult it is to get out and about when you suffer from arthritis after he shadowed two Carshalton residents with arthritis.

The event was put on by Arthritis Care and aimed to raise the awareness of MPs by highlighting the difficulties that face people with arthritis. The goal was to improve local services by helping others to understand the impact of the barriers that people with arthritis have to overcome, barriers which are often not obvious to able-bodied people.

Tom Discusses Arthritis Care with Residents

Arthritis Sufferers Often Struggle with Inaccessible Stations, Offices and Shops

Starting at the Strawberry Lodge, Mr Brake, Diane Hockley of Arthritis Care, and local Carshalton residents Pat Edwich and Doris Davis, both of whom suffer from arthritis, set off to attempt several day-to-day tasks. The first stop was to check the accessibility of Mr Brake's constituency office in Nightingale Road, Carshalton. The office was found to be user friendly, although the uneven forecourt might need re-surfacing.

The next stop was the local Carshalton rail station which scored very badly on the accessibility front as one of the platforms is only accessible via an underpass with many steps. In addition, it was apparent that there was a dire need for handrails, at the entrance of the station.

There was time for a quick look from outside at the shops in Carshalton High Street which although they are on the level

Mr Brake says, "Even simple tasks can prove to be daunting for these residents. It is vital that these issues are brought to the forefront to increase awareness of the difficulties arthritis sufferers face in going about their daily business."

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