Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Heard in the card shop

“Mind the step,” the shopkeeper warns a departing customer. He always says that. The step is a feature of his shop, running across the whole width about ten feet from the door. The step is needed because about seventy percent of the shop floor is a few inches above street level.

“Do people ever trip over it?” asks a customer.

“Sometimes, the shopkeeper replies. People with bifocals don’t always see it and people are sometimes talking and they miss it.”

“I suppose you’ve thought of putting in a ramp?”

“I have, but the whole floor from the step to the back of the shop would have to be lowered to street level which would cost about £12,000.”

“The whole floor? Wouldn’t a ramp do?”

“Yes, I’d like to put a little ramp there with a handrail."

"That would do..."

"It would but too many council departments are involved - plus the fire people. I’d end up with a big ramp all the way to the door, two big handrails blocking the front displays and the fire people would still have to check it and they often disagree with each other. Nobody wants to make things easy. Bureaucracy gone mad.”


Mark Wadsworth said...

The obvious thing would be to have the step where the pavement joins the shop, i.e. raise the floor at the front to be level with the back and the bottom edge of the front door by six inches.

People are far more likely to be on the lookout for a step if it were there.

Sam Vega said...

Mark, there are people employed by local authorities whose livelihood depends on folk like you keeping quiet...

Mark Wadsworth said...

SV, true, but they can still come round and inspect the step if they want.

A K Haart said...

Mark and Sam - I wondered about raising the front too, but I didn't ask. I'm sure there was more to this tale of woe.

As it stands there is easy disabled access to about 30% of the shop, but with the step moved to the door there would be no access.