I'm coming to the UK - Questions

annesharlie

Registered User
Apr 10, 2007
80
Vancouver Island, Canada
Hello all

I am bringing Ron over to the UK in order for us to have a visit with my family - my one sister lives in Brentwood, near London, and my other sister and mum will fly from South Africa to meet us there. It is important that they have a visit with him while he's still aware.

Anyway, I have some questions - I believe from a friend that Ron would qualify as a disabled person when it comes to admission charges for some of the places we may want to visit. ( eg Mme T, London Eye, British Museum Terracotta Soldiers) I will have the letter from the Canadian Govt, classifying him as disabled, and also a letter from his Neurologist. Will I run into hassles over this, or are they pretty good there? I'm wondering if a foreigner would qualify for the discounted rate? It would save us a number of pounds if they allow him in as disabled, and myself as a caregiver. It is completely true that he could not cope alone at all and needs a caregiver with him at all times in unfamiliar situations. I will be with him at all times. I just thought it may be nice to take advantage of this and show him around a bit. Any input would be very much appreciated. We leave on Wednesday. Is it cold there right now?

Thanks
Anne
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
Do you have some kind of disabled parking badge? Most attractions use that system to determine who is or is not disabled, and although you should be OK with what you have, unfortunately some people might go into gate-keeper mode and refuse to accept anything outside their experience. In your position I would be inclined to contact those attractions that you know you want to visit and attmept to at least get an email indicating that whatever you have will be acceptable, so that you can wave it in somebody's face. There is sometimes difficulty in getting people to accept an "invisible" disability, hence the use of the parking badge (known a a blue or orange badeg in the UK). I have to say I rarely had to show it when I was with my mother, but she was in a wheelchair.
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
Anne: I'm going to copy this thread into the main support forum as I think you might get more responses there.
 

annesharlie

Registered User
Apr 10, 2007
80
Vancouver Island, Canada
Thanks Jennifer

No, I don't have a parking badge, here in Canada disabled parking spots are strictly controlled and only for people with physical disabilities. That's a good idea about contacting the places before hand - I'll just have to be organized.
Thanks for copying the thread, you're right that there may be more people who can advise in the wider forum.

Anne
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
Anne something else to think about: will you be buying some kind of London transport pass? Because if so, and it has the "crows feet" national rail logo on it which the 3 and 7 day paper passes do (and maybe also the single day one) you can use the 2 for 1 offers on the daysoutguide.co.uk site. You need to print them out in advance (and I vaguely remember that you can only print 3 at once) but you could, theoretically, use all of them.
 

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
5,379
NW England
Hi Anne - not much practical advice to offer but wanted to wish you and Ron a great trip!

Just one thought, when my uncle flew to the UK from Toronto recently we contacted the airline (can't mention names here;) ) with some 'special requests' (no special needs) ...... and they were absolutely brilliant ....

Just mindful that because of security protocols these days (and none more so than this week with that 'certain anniversary' looming) airport terminals can be frustrating and bewildering for anyone at the best of times ... might be things your airline can do to help ease any stress for you and Ron ....

Bon voyage!!!! Wilkommen and all that!!!!!

Love, Karen, x
 

elaineo2

Registered User
Jul 6, 2007
945
leigh lancashire
dear annesharlie,i hope you enjoy your visit to London.Madam Tussauds is a must whilst you are there.I was down in London 2 weeks ago and paid a visit.well worth the money.Entry is free for disabled people and i am sure that with the amount of foreign visitors london gets it will cover them too.Having looked at their website it is advisable to book beforehand as they only allow so many at a time and if wheelchair access is needed this may reduce the number they let in for health and safety reasons.love and best wishes elainex
 

DeborahBlythe

Registered User
Dec 1, 2006
9,222
Accessible tourism

Dear Anne, the following link from the Visit London website gives information and ideas about visiting attractions in London, with disabled access as a priority. Hope you have a good visit. Weather has been quite benign for a few days, after a lousy summer. Not sure how long it will continue, but you may be lucky. I hope so. Regards Deborah

http://www.visitlondon.com/maps/accessibility/index
 

May

Registered User
Oct 15, 2005
627
Yorkshire
Hi Annesharlie

Just wanted wish you and Ron a great trip over here, enjoy! As to weather, it's beautiful at the moment , but in the good old UK you can get all four seasons in one day :rolleyes: so come prepared!
 

Taffy

Registered User
Apr 15, 2007
1,314
Dear Anne,
I hope that everything goes well with your trip. I am sure you will all have a lovely reunion. Fingers crossed the weather is on your side. Have a great time. Wishing you a safe trip. Taffy.
 

Westie

Registered User
May 14, 2007
155
59
South East London/Surrey border
Hi Anne,

Hope you and Ron have a lovely time over here later this week.

I think the suggestion of contacting a few attractions in advance to enquire about concessionary fees is a good idea - if you can find the time!

Peter is not considered 'bad enough' to qualify for the disabled parking badge scheme which was mentioned earlier so I can't help there I'm afraid.

Weather is forecast to be dry all week, which is something of a miracle after the summer we've had. It's sunny and warm during the day but does get quite chilly from about 5.30 onwards. Perfect sight seeing weather.

Have a fantastic time. If you get access to the internet while here, let us know where you've been and how it's going.

Mary-Ann
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,321
Kent
Dear Anne,

No practical advice to offer but hope you and your family have a wonderful reunion.

Love xx
 

annesharlie

Registered User
Apr 10, 2007
80
Vancouver Island, Canada
Such a lot of kind wishes!! Thank you all. Makes me want to get on my air transat seat without delay...

Westie, if Peter's not advanced enough to be qualifying as disabled, Ron stands no chance. Are you talking about just for parking or for entrance fees? Ron is very able physically, much more so than me ( can swim over an hour across a lake for example) so it have to be that they recognize mental disabilities. And he looks ok, a bit vacant and lost, but not all the time!! Anyway, it IS a good idea to phone ahead of time and clarify their policies. I certainly am not planning too ambitious a trip - will see how R is once we're there. I will definitely visit the days out website, what a useful idea. It IS nice to get a bit of a break. Nothing here in Canada - though I have to say, I haven't tried touristy type things - I can't see they'd discount Ron.

Thank you all for your kind input. I know I'll have a lovely time.
 

Westie

Registered User
May 14, 2007
155
59
South East London/Surrey border
Hi Anne - not long to go. Hope the packing's going well!

Peter doesn't qualify for disabled parking or entrance fees as he only receives the lowest rate of disability allowance for the mobility section. He is perfectly capable of actually walking anywhere - even if it is in the wrong direction and so fast that I can't keep up. Mental disability doesn't seem to trigger the same concessions.

A big bonus for us though, is that he is entitled to free travel on buses/trains/trams/underground. I looked into whether you might be able to get the same for Ron while he is here but you need to be a resident of a London Borough to qualify so afraid this won't help you.

Is Ron looking forward to the trip? Does he have any ideas of what he would like to do when here?

Mary-Ann
x
 

annesharlie

Registered User
Apr 10, 2007
80
Vancouver Island, Canada
Hi Mary-Ann

I am not really going to plan much with Ron and ask for his input, as I need to see how he is with the initial trip and the jet lag. I don't want to build up his hopes and then disappoint him.
Seems like the concession reductions probably won't apply - I'll have the letters and give it a try anyway. Isn't it frustrating how a physical handicap is given way more "respect" than mental problems?

For me the most important thing will be seeing my sisters and mum. It's been a long time and boy, I've needed them so much in the past months.

Thanks
Look after yourself, Mary-Ann

A