Every little step can lead to huge changes

The handrail will be welcomed by many elderly and infirm residents in Broom Park
The handrail will be welcomed by many elderly and infirm residents in Broom Park

A new hand rail has been installed en route to the shops in Newton Mearns.

The rail leading up the hill from Broom Shops, will enable ease of access for many of the area’s elderly residents.

Russell Macmillan, founder of East Renfrewshire Good Causes ERGC, who campaigns for better access for all, said: “Thanks to advances in medical treatments and many other factors, as a community, it is wonderful to see the increase in average life expectancy amongst our population.

“However, as we have more elderly and disabled residents staying within their own homes within the community, instead of living in hospitals, care homes or institutions, the ‘built environment’ is not necessarily fit for purpose.

“Whether it be a disability or an age-related reason, many things we all take for granted can become more difficult as a result of an impairment, which is likely to affect all of us at some stage in our life as we all grow older”

Previously in the Extra, we reported on the problems of uneven pavements, lack of “dropped curbs” and the problems caused when garden bushes grow out causing reduced access for parents with prams, elderly walking with strollers, wheelchair users and those suffering visual impairments or registered blind.

Russellcontinued:“With hospitals under increasing pressure, it is important we do all we can, to lessen the risk of falls, especially with an increasingly ageing population.

“This newly-installed hand rail on the hill leading up from theBroom shops, will help everyone during ‘icy conditions’ and also be of assistance all year round for those of us with impairments for whatever reason.

“In a perfect world, where resources were not so limited, it would be fantastic to have more even surfaces on pavements and hand rails like the one installed, to enable all of our neighbours to access local amenities, and I would like to thank East Renfrewshire Council for this small improvement in access.

“If we want people to live in their own homes for longer, then this is the type of thing we need to see more of.

“If the state can’t afford to provide more, I wonder if our communities may wish to pull together to fundraise to help itself, so we can do more of this type of thing ?”

Labour Councillor Ian McAlpine who organised the hand rail installation at Broom Park, added: “We are delighted to work with the ERGoodCauses campaign and the local community, to raise the standard for all our residents, and look forward to further improvments in the future.”