Top shops for access

Four stores with the best accessibility in the Nelson and Tasman region have been rewarded at the launch of a new 48-point accessibility checklist.

Tasman district councillor Judene Edgar said the list was developed by the council's Accessibility for All forum. She noted their research trip around Richmond last November was helpful.

Forum members and councillors from the Nelson and Tasman councils donned earmuffs and sight-impairment glasses, and used crutches, wheelchairs and mobility scooters to get an idea of what it was like to go shopping in Richmond with an impairment.

The list includes ideas like having a pen and paper ready at the counter for customers to write down their requests, and having Braille on important signs.

"I know [the research trip] was a real eye-opener for many people on those little things that really make a difference, and certain things that can really turn you off," Mrs Edgar said.

The New Zealand Post Shop on Hardy St was given an award from Uniquely Nelson chair Duncan Grey because of its easy access. John Inglis of Motueka's Astrolabe store accepted a bouquet from Howie Timms, chair of Our Town Motueka. Astrolabe was rewarded for its wheelchair-accessible changing room and uncluttered floor space.

Andrew McGlashen of Richmond's McGlashen Pharmacy accepted his award from Richmond Unlimited chairman David Hill, and Karen Brookes picked up a bouquet on behalf of Golden Bay museum. Other businesses to be praised were: Shanton, Nelson and Richmond branches of Taylors shoe store, Couplands, Nelson's Bendon branch, Mondo, most banks and Takaka library.

The Nelson Mail