OAP kicked out of Newcastle Wilkinson store because of mobility scooter 'health and safety' risk
MOBILITY scooter rider Christine Proctor says she was humiliated infront of shoppers – after being ordered to get out of a store for health and safety reasons.
The 71-year-old, right, says she was forced to leave Newcastle's Wilkinson store after being told mobility scooters could not be ridden around the shop.
She said she had gone into the Castle Walk branch because of the shop's automatic doors and wide aisles.
Now Wilkinson officials are investigating the health and safety row.
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Christine, who can only walk a few yards because of a respiratory problem, said: "I don't particularly appreciate being humiliated in front of a group of shoppers.
"If it is the individual store's policy to impose a ban on mobility scooters, then to avoid any further embarrassment to anyone else, I would respectfully suggest to the management that a polite notice to that effect should be displayed at the entrance.
"I won't be going in there again."
Christine, of Venice Court, The Westlands, says she has never been asked to leave a shop before.
She added: "I would just like to save anyone else the embarrassment of being asked to leave.
"We read the sign outside the store which had a list of things not to bring in, such as bicycle helmets, but there was no mention of mobility scooters."
Christine was shopping with her 71-year-old husband John when the dispute broke out on January 28.
John said: "I recently bought the mobility scooter for my wife because she is unable to walk more than a few yards.
"The scooter has given her a new lease of life allowing us to visit places which were previously inaccessible.
"But we also accept that there are places which are out of limits and common sense prevails, because if used inappropriately the scooters can be considered to be a bit of a nuisance.
"I explained to the staff that my wife was paying for her purchases at the till and needed the mobility scooter to get out and about. But I was told: 'put it outside, health and safety don't allow them'."
Wilkinson officials are speaking to the staff at the Newcastle store following the complaint.
Spokesman Peter Woodall said: "It is absolutely not our policy to stop customers entering with mobility scooters.
"We have millions of customers every week and many of them are older and use them. We deliberately design the shops to accommodate people as best as we can, we have no issue with them.
"I will make sure that the incident is investigated."