Saturday, November 17, 2012

"A Bridge in the wrong part of town?"

The Gurn recently had an opportunity to catch up with Murd Dunbar and hear his latest thoughts on how his Firhall Bridge campaign is going. You can also read a letter from Murd in this week’s Nairnshire Telegraph. He strongly believes the Highland Council is discriminating against the disabled and others who might not be easily able to cross the bridge. “The bridge cannot be crossed by everyone in the Community owing to the steep steps. Remember that within a short distance there are two care homes who look after the disabled and are denied their right  to cross the bridge when all that is required is a simple ramp to get up onto the bridge which provides ample room to take a wheelchair across. What about the human rights of those disabled who would dearly love to make use of the circular riverside walk?
Murd continued: “If they were criminals and in jail they would not be treated in this way but unfortunately their only fault is disabled or just unable to get up the steps for what ever reason  So I appeal to all  who are involved with rights of people who are discriminated against to support my campaign to have a ramp installed.

Murd made reference to a recent photograph of Michael Green down at the new path installed between the Bailey Bridge and the East Beach: “In the local press there was a photo of Councilor Green and a member of the local access panel opening the new path at the harbour which is a nice accomplishment.  Being able to do the circular walk of the river with all the beauty nature has to offer  and it can often offer  reasonable shelter on a cold windy day when a walk along the pier is not the ideal place to be - as those who do both walks will confirm. Is there any one out there willing to tell me why a ramp cannot be installed? Continuously I get told there is no money for this type of protect which has been estimated at around £30.000 and I am pretty sure this could be reduced with a help with a bit of thinking out of the box and help from local companies perhaps?

Murd still had more to say: “How I look forward to seeing a photo of Councillors and members of the access panel at the opening of a ramp. Their support is required as is that of any one who can help to accomplish this task.

The indefatigable Murd made a final plea: “So please bear in mind those who human rights but would be denied there rights to get across if they come to Nairn including many injured servicemen who might one day fancy a holiday in Nairn. It may be not a case of a Bridge  too Far  but just a Bridge in the wrong part of town.

Murd finished by quoting one of Highland Council’s slogans: “Let’s get it sorted!”


Anonymous said...

what a load of tosh!

Using the fact that there are 2 care homes 3/4mile away who cant access the bridge is pathetic.

They would need a cross country vehicle just to get there.

I have relatives in wheelchair at one of said homes and would never ever contemplate the route.

Fact, there is a steep brae leading down to the green road that you could never take a wheelchair.

1. You would lose control on the way down.
2. If you got down in one piece you won't get back up again.
3.You would have to be a right moron to try.

The firhall bridge was built to carry
the towns water supply originally, no other reason, the fact you could use it to cross was a bonus.

Give it a rest Murd seems to me you like the little publicity the gurn gives you and you just dont seem to understand the right of access to the countryside.

There are other alternatives which are totaly suitable, so please find another reason for your campaign other than the care homes.

Graisg said...

I'm interested anon - what are the alternatives to a circular walk around the river that thousands of able bodied citizens enjoy each year, provided of course they have the strength or numbers in the party to carry bikes or buggies across?

Anonymous said...

Graisg: check out the country- side access requirements and show where it says that landowners or local authorites must provide a circular route?

Dont get confused that just because there is a bridge that access has to be provided, not the case. All the local authority has to do is warn users that the bridge is not accesible.

Anyhow thats the brief on it and yor question on what is the alternative has nowt to do with the fact that Murd continues to use the care homes as the main point of his argument, even though they cant even get there without endangering themselves, as the route is totally impractible.

John St. Millionaire said...

Good Old Murd should open his wallet & I bet between the leather there would be enough coffers to fund the building for the access ramps, go on Mr Dunbar it would make a lovely Christmas present for all those who cannot cross the river.

Murd Dunbar said...

If any one is talking a lot of tosh it's who ever is hiding behind anonymous. infact I would say it qualifies as dose of (well let’s not go there perhaps)
But unfortunately there are people like that in this world. The reason I continue to campaign and am grateful to all who support the need for a ramp. As I do think of others I myself am fortunate enough not to require a ramp but that does not justify there not being access for ALL and not just for the care homes
Now for a few facts the bridge was built in 1958 to replace the one washed away nd Nairn had a water supply a long time before that
An extract from an Highland Council e-mail dated the 30th March

The equality Act 2010 replaces the discrimination act and incorporates the duty to make reasonable adjustments. Under this duty the Council has a responsibility to take reasonable steps to remove physical barriers where it puts disabled people at a substantial disadvantage compared with people who are not disabled.

I and others who don't have your selfish aptitude think it to be a reasonable request.
You may also be interested in what the management of what the care homes think. I have asked the Gurn to post a copy of an e-mail that demonstrates their support.
Please enlighten me to the part of the country code where people do not have access to a public path and a right of way be it disabled or otherwise
A reply stating YOUR NAME should be interesting to read.
As you can see I am not ashamed of my name or what I say.
Murd Dunbar

Graisg said...

Here is the e-mail that Murd refers to

Mr Cumming said...

The sad fact Murd is Anonymous is correct in what he/she states, as a regular walker on the riverside it can be difficult even for able bodied persons to tackle the brae going up or down, & as for the Green Road with the condition it is in, wheelchair access to the bridge would be practically impossible, with the pitted & uneven surface being a major hazard to wheelchair pusher & occupant. I wonder if any of the care home residents family or dependants would grant permission & take the risk? & also who would be held responsible if any injuries occurred ?

William Cummings.

Murd said...

Well MR William Cummings if that was the only to access the river paths from the homes and they were the only ones that require to cross the bridge you might have a point. But as a river walker? you must know mothers with prams kids with bikes etc,etc all find it to get across it is possible to do the advertised circular walk and do not have to go near either of the said obsticles. If you are unfamiliar with how this can be achieved I will gladly meet you explain to you or any one else that does not know.

Mr Cumming said...

Well Mr William Cummings yes I am keeping fine Murd, thanks for asking, yes I am very familiar with the surroundings, so I feel I must decline your kind invitation, but I still feel your off the beaten track as there would be safety risks with the ramps leading to the bridge. A better idea would be to build a new bridge altogether & promote The Nairn River Walks as an attraction for walkers [with disabled access]for ramblers, birdwatchers, cross country runners, mountain bikers, anglers,photographers,etc etc.


Anonymous said...

Murd - ya canna make up yer mind if it is the DDA Regs yer persuing or the equality act.

Make up yer mind mun, im just aboot worn oot wee yer comin an going an no havin a clue whit yer sayin. one minute its disabled chiles the next minute its bairns in pushchairs then gadgies on bikes.

Man yuv got me fair worn oot mun, git of yer soapbox and jist chill a bit mun, this vigallante stuff is just no good fur ya mun, tak up some knitting or flytying on that ya ken.

Im fair loosing ma sleep wi this carrie oan so i dread tae think whit you must be goan thru.

Chill man an jist look after yirsil

ah the best from heilin mannie

murd said...



Anonymous said...

Aye Murd, Ah ken ya do, and your heart is in the richt place.

Jist dinna get too hung up wee it, yuv made yer point and sown the seeds jeest let them that ken better geet on wee it.

Its no to much to ask mun, its jeest they micht mak a decision and want the credit fur it, somtimes it pays tae play the daft laddie an let them think it wis their idea.

Abody kens yer well intended mun

just chill mun

Heilan Mannie

MURD said...

I am nay looking for ony credit mannie Just a ramp but if means I have to go on about it I WILL. If others want the credit they are more than welcome just gees a ramp and I WILL BE HAPPY