Sight Scotland and Sight Scotland Veterans have strongly criticized the City of Edinburgh Council for neglecting the safety of blind and partially sighted individuals at a perilous junction.

The intersection of Telford Road, Hillhouse Road, and Strachan Road, despite being one of the busiest in the capital, lacks adequate pedestrian facilities, posing significant risks.

Representatives from both sight loss charities recently met with the City of Edinburgh Council to address the issue, only to discover that the junction had been inexplicably removed from the Council's list of upgrades.

Caroline Hedley, a Rehabilitation and Mobility Worker with Sight Scotland, expressed deep concern, stating, "This junction poses a major risk to anybody with visual impairment, and we are extremely worried that it will take a serious accident before any action is taken."

Key issues identified include the absence of audible signals, revolving cones, and the need for basic repairs on some crossings. Protective barriers are also lacking, making the junction dangerous even for sighted individuals. Strachan Road notably lacks a pedestrian crossing facility altogether.

"As part of my job, I help blind and partially sighted people with their mobility, both indoor and out. The biggest priority with a mobility assessment is safety," says Hedley. "I have clients living close to this junction, and I need to explain to them that the safest way to cross these roads is with sighted assistance, and this is absolutely essential for people who cannot see the red and green man."

Craig Spalding, Chief Executive of Sight Scotland, emphasizes the urgency of the situation, stating, "We are calling on the City of Edinburgh Council to upgrade this junction now before a serious accident occurs."

Councillor Hal Osler of Inverleith echoes these concerns, highlighting the lack of consideration for the safety and accessibility of pedestrians in public space design. Osler deems it "utterly shameful" that the junction was removed from the list of upgrades.

Sight Scotland and Sight Scotland Veterans are mobilizing a campaign urging people to join them in calling for the urgent upgrade of the Strachan Road, Hillhouse Road, and Telford Road junction in Edinburgh. Support the cause by writing to your local councillor.

Caroline Hedley looking into camera

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