Are you worried about obstacles on pavements?

Monday 15 May 10:00am - 1:00pm
Cheltenham Race Course, Evesham Road, Cheltenham, GL50 4SH

Are you worried about the number of obstacles on pavements? If you are blind or partially sighted and live in Bristol or Gloucestershire, come join us.

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Join Bristol and Gloucestershire Sight Loss Councils on Monday 15 May 2023 to have your voice heard on navigating our streets independently and safely.

We want to hear from you on the challenges you face. Obstacles on pavements could include advertising board (A-boards), pavement furniture, overhanging vegetation, e-scooters, or pavement parking.

During the event, you will have the opportunity to ask questions to representatives from Bristol City Council, Gloucestershire County Council, and district council officers. You can learn more about the planning policies around street furniture and the design of pavements and roads.

Guest speaker, Andrew Gemmell , will be joining us. Andrew was born blind, and previously worked as a local government officer before becoming a racehorse owner. He will be sharing inspirational stories from his life and his journey into horse racing.

Alun Davies, Engagement Manager for the South West, said:

“We are actively working with councils in Bristol and Gloucestershire to ensure that blind and partially sighted people can move around safely and confidently. Many visually impaired residents tell us they are scared to leave their homes. They feel pavements are too hazardous due to street clutter. They are also concerned that cyclists and e-scooter riders using pavements do not pay enough attention to pedestrians.”

Anela Wood, Bristol SLC member, said:

“Our event is the perfect opportunity to have your say about the obstacles that make life difficult for blind and partially sighted people when out and about. Come along to meet other people with the same concerns. You will also hear from professionals who may be able to help resolve some of the difficulties we face on a daily basis.”

Yahya Pandor, Gloucestershire SLC member, added:

“This VI forum is being held by people living with sight loss and we will be focussing on issues around the built environment. It will be a great way to connect with a supportive community, gain knowledge and skills to improve your daily life, and provide the opportunity to advocate for change.”

Clare Finnimore, Gloucestershire SLC member, said:

“We are delighted to welcome famous racehorse owner Andrew Gemmell as our inspirational speaker at our event.

“Andrew was born blind and is the proud racehorse owner of ‘Paisley Park’. His horse (named after pop star Prince’s recording studio) has won many prestigious races and Andrew is back at Cheltenham this week. As well as a uniquely close relationship with his horse, Andrew is a great West Ham supporter, a cricket fanatic, and worked for Westminster Council for many years. He loves rock musicians including Prince and the Rolling Stones and has been to many of their gigs.

“We look forward to hearing how he manages his busy life, fame, and how he’s got through the tough times – including when his beloved horse was in danger of losing his life.”


We look forward to hearing how he manages his busy and eventful life, fame and how he’s got through the tough times, including when his beloved horse was in danger of losing his life.

Event details

  • Date and time: Monday 15 May 2023, from 10am – 1pm
  • Venue: Cheltenham Race Course, Evesham Road, Cheltenham, GL50 4SH
  • This event is free to attend. Lunch will be provided for those attending in-person.
  • Sighted guides from will be available to assist attendees at Cheltenham Racecourse.
  • If you are bringing a guide or companion with you, they will need to book a separate place, under their name, to attend. This is to enable us to manage numbers for the size of the venue.
  • Booking is required. If you cannot attend in person, you can join the event via Zoom. Registration required to join via Zoom.
  • Closing date: 12 May 2023, 3pm

This event will be live streamed to enable people to join us remotely and you may feature in the question segment of this event. Please note that if your camera is turned off, the name on your zoom account will still appear.

This free event is for blind and partially sighted people living in Bristol or Gloucestershire. Attending the event is a great way to find out more about the work of Sight Loss Councils and the ways in which people can get involved.


Book to attend in-person

Book to attend online


About Sight Loss Councils

Sight Loss Councils are led by blind and partially sighted members. Together, they tackle local issues and work with businesses and service providers to improve the accessibility of their services.

Photography and video

During registration, you will be asked to confirm you are happy to be included in any photographs, videos or images from the event. These will be used promotional purposes, raising the profile of our work and for sharing information and good practice. Please note, if you do not wish to be included, you may still feature in the background.

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