Simon is a young man who lives in Cambridge. He has a profound learning disability, epilepsy and scoliosis. He is a wheel-chair user who needs 24-hour support with all aspects of his care, including going to the toilet.
Simon is a keen football supporter – he supports Manchester United and Cambridge City. He enjoys going to see Cambridge City play home matches. He loves the atmosphere at a match – particularly the noise and the chance to interact with lots of people. The atmosphere is best when his team is winning!
But football stadiums don’t have suitable toilets for Simon to use.
‘There is no option but to leave the game early if Simon needs to be changed’ says his supporter. ‘Sometimes this means going before half-time.’
‘It is a horrible having to leave the stadium early – often it is just as the atmosphere is getting really good that we have to go. It doesn’t feel fair that Simon can’t participate like everyone else. ‘
‘I think Simon would love to see Manchester United play or go to an England match but that is not a possibility. There is no way we could travel that distance and then go to a stadium without a suitable changing facility – we would be stranded!’
Simon needs a Changing Places toilet, with an adult-sized height-adjustable changing bench where his continence pads can be changed, a hoist to lift Simon from his wheelchair to the bench, and plenty of space.
‘If there were Changing Places toilets in football stadiums it would mean a lot more freedom for Simon. He would be able to stay and enjoy a whole match at his local stadium like anyone else. He could also go to away matches and have the opportunity to go and see Manchester United or England play.’ his supporter explains.
‘For people with similar needs to Simon who aren’t going to matches at all because there are no Changing Places toilets – this would open up an amazing experience to them.’