Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Paralympic legacy not felt in North Devon, says Barnstaple mum

12:28 20 August 2014

Samia and Ann Galawest are asking businesses in North Devon to offer more disabled facilities.

Samia and Ann Galawest are asking businesses in North Devon to offer more disabled facilities.


Mum’s campaign for better disabled facilities in North Devon comes as charity announces two-thirds of UK’s top attractions are not fully wheelchair accessible.

A BARNSTAPLE mum is calling upon North Devon businesses to provide better disabled access and facilities for young people.

Ann Galawest’s daughter Samia, 19, suffered two strokes at a young age which have impaired her speech and vision and left her unable to walk without assistance.

“Samia has had swimming sessions with the Stroke Society, but this is mainly with elderly people,” said Ms Galawest.

“There is a real lack of facilities for disabled people – particularly young people – in this area.

“After the Paralympics we thought things would change with all the awareness raised, but they simply haven’t.

“Taking a disabled child abroad on holiday is very hard so I think the tourism businesses are missing a trick by not offering disabled access and facilities.

“Otherwise people like Samia end up feeling extremely isolated.”

This week, Vitalise, a charity offering holidays for disabled people, released a survey showing two-thirds of the UK’s top attractions were not fully wheelchair accessible.

The charity is calling for visitor attractions and other public venues to do more to make themselves accessible and improve information for people with disabilities.

Chris Simmonds, Vitalise’s chief executive, said: “Our amazing visitor attractions and natural wonders risk losing out on valuable income if they don’t take accessibility seriously – and this applies as much to the countryside and coastline as it does to the built environment.

“Our own research shows two-thirds of people with disabilities have decided against visiting tourist attractions because of a lack of clear information about how accessible they are.

“People with disabilities have an annual spending power estimated at £80billion, so it makes economic sense for our tourist venues to do more to attract and cater for disabled people.

“If not, they risk losing out on valuable income.”

What do you think about disabled facilities in North Devon? Email


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other North Devon Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by North Devon Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique North Devon Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

The proposed hotel in Westward Ho!

Planning inspector overturns Torridge District Council decision to refuse ‘in principle’ plans for 15-bed ‘Whotel’

Read more
Could Eleanor Grant's song In Your Arms be a Christmas number one?

Teenage singer’s song for new animated movie about the Louisa lifeboat launch makes its bid for festive chart success

Read more
Fore Street Christmas market will be undercover this year. Picture: Sally Almond

Sunday’s event will go ahead as planned, but undercover in case of inclement weather

Read more
Plans for the lower High Street corner entrance of Green Lanes shopping centre, Barnstaple

Entrance to shopping centre could be drastically modernised if owners’ plans are given the green light

Read more
Emma Perry from Children's Hospice South West, John Cockram and Leo Cooper from North Devon Hospice. Picture: Elliot Anderton

Christmas trees have been donated to two hospices in North Devon.

Read more
Abi Calvert and Darcy Baldock at the Ilfracombe Lighting of the Lights.

‘Best crowd in years’ as thousands gather to kick off ‘combe’s Christmas

Read more
Get your panto tickets on Black Friday

Get a special Black Friday discount to see Cinderella at the Queen’s Theatre

Read more
Yesterday, 17:35
North Devon MP Peter Heaton-Jones

Peter Heaton-Jones says the Autumn Statement ‘kept giving good news’

Read more
Yesterday, 16:02
Is there cash for the North Devon Link Road?

North Devon will be able to bid for a share of a £475m transport pot

Read more

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas Magazine

Click here for your ultimate guide to
Christmas in North Devon

Local Weather



max temp: 12°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications