A woman with mobility issues living in a council flat in Swindon is appealing for the local authority to change its mind about fitting a disabled wet room to enable her to bathe safely.
Suzanne Hancock, who is 56 and lives in the flat with her partner, discovered she had both Parkinson’s and a rare brain disorder called corticobasal syndrome after falling out of the bath and breaking her foot, the Swindon Advertiser reports.
This condition is degenerative and leads to a progressive loss of mobility, as well as problems with speech, sight and swallowing.
While the council is prepared to fund a stairlift, it will not pay for the installation of a wet room and is instead advising Ms Hancock to move to a bungalow in another part of the town, away from her friends and neighbours.
Speaking to the newspaper, she said: “The bath is just as dangerous as the stairs for me.”
Noting that none of her neighbours drive, she said she would be “so isolated” if she did move.
“I know of other council houses in this area that have had wet rooms installed, so why not this one?” Ms Hancock added.
A council spokesperson said a final decision has not been made, stating: “Our team continues to work with Mrs Hancock.”
Without council funding, the one way a wet room could be acquired would be for the couple to pay for it themselves. However, this is beyond their current means and they have begun a crowdfunding effort, albeit one that has made little progress so far.
Some people needing council help do eventually get it, but have a long wait. In April, the Southern Daily Echo reported that arthritis sufferer Michael Davey, who lives in Southampton, had to wait two years for an accessible shower.
The report noted that a study this spring by the Bureau for Investigative Journalism had identified the city as one of the ten worst local authority areas for waiting times faced by those needing home mobility adjustments.