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Highlighting venue accessibility with the WHILL Model C

20th December, 2018

Georgina Layton, a 24-year-old specialist blogger from Chesterfield, has visited various national attractions, stately homes, hotels and restaurants – all to successfully report on venue accessibility around the UK on her WHILL Model C.

Educated at Durham University, Georgina began blogging 18 months ago following a successful stint as a Business Development Manager for a large engineering firm. However, due to the onset of spinal and nerve damage initially caused by gastroparesis, she decided to change her career. Now living with sensitivity to movement, Georgina is able to visit and investigate various locations around the UK thanks to the stability and comfort of the multi award-winning powerchair. 

Today, over 14,000 unique users follow Georgina’s social media feeds and blog, Disabled Travel with Georgina, a personal experience of visiting venues that display incomplete or inaccurate information about their wheelchair access. The blog strives to assure fellow wheelchair and powerchair users they can travel to specific destinations with peace of mind and reduced forward planning. Georgina reports on accommodation, toilets and parking to name a few.

In addition to her blogs and vlogs, she provides consultancy services for companies seeking advice on accessibility such as hotel and restaurant chains. English Heritage have leveraged many of her findings and Georgina recently completed a review of Disneyland Paris.

“I am thoroughly enjoying my adventures in WHILL Model C as it is helping me build up a more comprehensive library of real-life accessibility advice for disabled travellers,” Georgina says. “I’ve volunteered in the past for a charity called Attitude is Everything which is an Arts Council England Sector Support Organisation. They work with the music industry; audiences and artists to improve deaf and disabled people’s access to live music. By having the WHILL to tackle large crowds in comfort and with such attractive styling, I know it would be ideal for those attending music events.” 

Georgina Layton on her WHILL Model C in autumn

With the introduction of the WHILL, Georgina is working with TGA to illustrate the many benefits of this next generation electric wheelchair. As well as featuring advanced technology, aesthetics and performance, the chair can also be quickly dismantled into three manageable components for easy lifting and storage in a car boot. This ensures independence locally and further afield for individuals such as Georgina seeking greater lifestyle flexibility. 

“The WHILL Model C is very impressive, particularly the tight turning circle,” Georgina says. “I’ve never seen a powerchair as manoeuvrable and transportable as the WHILL. It is nippy and compact around the shops yet sturdy enough to walk my dog Milo around the local reservoir and park. When I am driving around I’m glad of the stability and support it provides as jolts and bangs cause me pain. It has a smooth ride and as there are no castors I can wear a long dress without the worry of it getting caught under the wheel. At home it is even more beneficial, especially when we are entertaining. We hosted a Halloween party and even with lots of tables and chairs set up inside and out, I could negotiate around them with ease.” 

“Another huge plus for me is the numerical battery gauge which gives me peace of mind,” Georgina adds. “You know exactly how much power you have left whereas other products have ‘bars’ to represent remaining charge which leaves you feeling unsure. Another major benefit is the basket which sits under the seat. This means I do not have to hang a rucksack over the back of the seat and worry about my possessions being stolen.

“By using a WHILL, I have been able to take my powerchair with me in the car for the first time as we only have a car with limited adaptations. It’s even been in my friend’s car which was fantastic. It’s so flexible. My partner dismantles it without hassle especially as there are no fiddly wires to attach or the need for special tools. Freedom just got a whole load simpler.”

 

Interested in the WHILL Model C? Find out more.

Georgina's blogs will be shared by TGA throughout 2019.