Oulton Broad: Pub denies kicking disabled woman out over mobility scooter


footage showing the mum-of-three getting off the scooter to climb over steps and into the venue ‘proves she can walk unaided’.

Nicola has used a wheelchair since her 20s as she has lymphedema, a condition that causes swelling as a result of a build-up of lymph fluid in the body.

She said she ‘wasn’t going to let the steps into the pub stop her’ as she visited The Wolf Inn in Oulton Broad, Suffolk.

Husband Mark helped her to ‘hike the scooter over them’ before she walked a few steps while leaning on it on September 4.

Speaking to Metro.co.uk, Nicola said: ‘I sat back down and went on my scooter to the bar and this chap stood there and said “you’re going to have to take that outside”.

‘I looked around and said, “What outside?” He went “Your scooter, you can’t have that in here”. And I’m like, “really? Okay, why not?” He said “It’s health and safety, this is too small a bar to have them in”.’

Nicola says she told the barman there was ‘more than enough space’ as she had entered the pub without hitting furniture, adding that she only wanted to stay for one drink.

She felt ‘horrifically embarrassed’ when he allegedly replied: ‘You need to go outside and wait until somebody comes out and serves you.’

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Disability

However, bosses at The Wolf Inn say the staff member did not ask the customer to leave.

In a statement on Facebook, they said: ‘We have a low threshold to allow wheelchair user easy access to our public area. This low threshold doesn’t allow access of outdoor use mobility scooters.

‘The customer got off the mobility scooter and physically lifted the scooter into The Wolf Inn, and then walked through the bar and got on.

‘Our staff member acknowledged the fact that the customer could walk unaided and politely asked her if she would leave the scooter outside.

‘He advised ‘”we will make you comfortable and give you table service for your duration whilst in the premises”.

Disability

‘Our disability access statement is available on our premises to read and on our website for customers to read prior to coming into the establishment.’

A Suffolk Constabulary spokesman said: ‘Police received a report of an incident where it was claimed a licensed bar refuse to serve a disabled female and who was using a mobility buggy.

‘Police made enquires and are treating it as a hate incident. This means no formal action will be taken in relation to the matter but it has been recorded by the police and the relevant licensing authority has been informed. 

‘We have also engaged with the licence holder and provided them with suitable advice. The complainant has been informed.’

An East Suffolk Council spokesperson said police were dealing with the complaint and they ‘expect all licensees to comply with all equalities legislation’.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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