Access for disabled at village store is not a problem

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Latest news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

Claims that shoppers who are disabled are being left out in the cold by a supermarket – because there is no disabled access for them – have been rubbished.

Shoppers with a disability, or who are in a wheelchair, have go to the back of the new £670,000 High Street Co-operative supermarket to get into the shop because it is a listed building with different floor levels.

But reports that the store, which opened in April in the former china shop Hogg@Home, does not have an access for the disabled are untrue, says parish council chairman Carroll Reeve.

And Mr Reeve says he is not aware of anyone boycotting the store because of access issues.

“Even the old Co-op, which is still open and is about half the size of the new one, didn’t have disabled access because of steps.

“I am not aware of anyone who thinks that the side access is a problem.

“They’ve put a door down the side of the shop. You have to remember it’s a listed building.”

Roger Grosvenor, retail executive officer for the East of England Co-op, said: “Our store is in a listed building in a conservation area, which requires us to comply with a number of building regulations.

“This, along with the store’s limited size and original build, means that accommodating wheelchairs and mobility scooters is challenging.

“However, we’ve done as much as we can to make using our store is easier for customers with limited mobility.

“During our refurbishment, we fitted double doors at the back to improve access.

“We provide a personal shopping service in the store, so customers with limited mobility can ask our staff to shop on their behalf.”