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E-scooters, audio description and gaming

The government has begun a trial of rental e-scooter schemes and any local authority can apply. What are the concerns for blind and visually impaired people and can anything be done about it? We speak to David Davies from Pacts, the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety, a charity which advises parliament on road safety issues.

The charity Scope has done some research on which streaming platforms are the best when it comes to audio description. Why don't they all provide the same accessibility?

And we speak to two blind gamers about the release of The Last of Us Part 2. It's been hailed as a game changer as it has sixty accessibility settings and a host of features which mean you can play it without seeing it. Steve Saylor and Sightless Kombat give us their reviews.

Presenter: Peter White
Producer: Louise Clarke-Rowbotham

Supermarket shopping and education in lockdown

Many visually impaired people are still struggling to do a regular shop but a new scheme may help. The RNIB has joined with other visual impairment charities and DEFRA to provide help to those who have not been able to access priority shopping slots online.

We hear how sports students Kali Holder and George Williams have been continuing their sports studies while their college is closed. Lucy Proctor is Executive Principal at the Royal National College and she tells us about the challenges of re-opening for students while maintaining social distancing.

To access the shopping scheme, you can telephone 0303 123 9999 or visit

Guide Dogs and Guide Runners

The face-to-face training of guide dogs came to an end with lockdown. And the crisis has led to questions about how dogs may be losing their skills in this period of relative inactivity. Guide Dogs Director of Operations Peter Osborne takes on questions about how much of the delays pre-dated Coronavirus and where the My Guide project fits into future plans. You can contact their helpline on 08007811444.

And Iris Peel puts the miles in. The accomplished runner was training for the Manchester Marathon when Covid struck. She thinks she can safely go out with her guide runner in a park operating while still respecting the two metre social distancing rule, but England Athletics say it's not safe. Should blind people lose their ability to make distancing choices that are left up to other members of the public?

And attention is turning to the NHS tracing app which will be a key tool in fighting Coronavirus. But how accessible was the version trialled on the Isle of Wight? Ruth Hollingshead of Sight for Wight gives us her verdict.

Presented by Peter White
Produced by Kevin Core

Social distancing

In this special programme we discuss what the rules on social distancing mean for the way blind and visually impaired people live their lives. For example, is it safe for a stranger to guide someone by the arm? What concerns are there around using public transport?

We speak to Kirsten Hearn, a blind listener who raised the issue before lockdown. We hear how she is feeling now.

We hear the experience of those who live in countries just emerging from lockdown. Peter Brass is a board member of the German Federation of the Blind and Partially Sighted and Lars Bosselmann is director of the European Blind Union based in Paris. To get some answers, we speak to Professor Robert Dingwall, a sociologist with a public health specialism based at Nottingham Trent University.

Presented by Peter White
Produced by Louise Clarke-Rowbotham

Uber, Eye Treatment and Lockdown Fitness

Why Uber is being taken to court by a blind user who says he's had his journeys cancelled after he has told them he has a guide dog.

During the outbreak of the Covid-19 what is happening to eye treatment? In the latest in our round-up of what's happening around the UK, we hear from Raymond Curran, Head of Ophthalmic Services for the Health and Social Care Board in Northern Ireland.

Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge want your help to carry out a survey of how people are keeping themselves in trim during lockdown and hear what the problems are. It’s being organised online by Dr Dan Gordon, principal lecturer in Exercise Physiology and a former Paralympic cyclist. We find out exactly what he wants to know. You can take part by visiting the British Blind Sport website.

5 episodes