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Mum with disabled daughter campaigns for wheelchair ramp - and gets £40,000 'slalom' eyesore

Clare Lally begged her local council for improved access for wheelchair-bound Katie, seven, after the council gave them a home at the top of three flights of stairs. What she got turned her relief to shock...

Clare Lally spent two years campaigning for wheelchair home access for her disabled daughter - only for the council to build this 10-level slalom ‘eyesore’ outside her house.

The mum-of-one begged her local council for improved access for wheelchair-bound Katie, seven, after the council gave them a home at the top of three flights of stairs.

When officials finally relented, Clare’s relief soon turned to shock when West Dunbartonshire Council spent £40,000 on a chicane-style steel ramp monstrosity which fills their entire front garden.

The winding 60-metre path is proving a long way round for Clare and bulbar palsy sufferer Katie - who can’t even see the bottom of the ramp from her bedroom window.

Dismayed mum Clare, 33, said: ‘There must have been a better solution. The council could have gone about the whole project in a more sensible way.'

'We had to move to the house to get easier access for Katie and we have fought all these months to get that.

Ugly: The steel ramp outside Clare and Katie's home has since been taken over by skateboarders. (SWNS)

View: Disabled Katie can't even see the bottom of the ramp from her bedroom window. (SWNS)

The steel ramp wall which greets Clare and Katie outside their house. (SWNS)
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The council said this was the only option to fit something into the garden because of building regulations.

'It is a lot easier but I don't believe that the council weren't able to do something else.

 

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'We weren't fighting for a massive steel ramp - we just wanted to improve Katie's quality of life.

'What they have built is something which I would never have expected a local council to do. We have to open our blinds and look at it every day.'

Clare said the ridiculous ramp outside their home in Clydebank, near Glasgow, has since been taken over by skateboarders.

 

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She campaigned for the ramp for Katie, who suffers from bulbar palsy - caused by complications after she and twin Holly were born prematurely - and is confined to a wheelchair.

West Dunbartonshire Council have not yet completed the final costings of the horror ramp at the home in Clydebank, near Glasgow, but it is estimated to be around £40,000.

The ramp cost an estimated £40,000 for West Dunbartonshire Council to build. (SWNS)

Mum Clare, 33, campaigned for wheelchair access for daughter Katie, seven, for two years. (SWNS)

Access: How Clare's house near Glasgow looked before the ramp was installed. (SWNS)

Having attracted nuisance skateboarders and left Clare and Katie with the ramp, council officials have also refused to install a gate, citing health and safety concerns.

Clare, who shares the home with partner Derek Steel, added: 'We have waited so long for access and now we have got it.

'But we need to have a gate at the bottom.  A lot of youths have started using it because they think it is fun to play on it.

 

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'The council have said they can't give us a gate because it would block the public footpath. Is that the case for everybody else with a gate which swings outward?

'I don't care how the gate opens. I just want one put up.'

 

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A spokesman for West Dunbartonshire Council said that the family had indicated they could manage the steps at the property.

He said: 'This proved not to be the case. As they were existing tenants, it was the council's duty to make the necessary adaptations.

'This led to the installation of the wheelchair ramp as requested by the family.'