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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
Afet

Concessionary Travel in the UK

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I am starting this topic, just incase any of you do not know already.

Here in England, we are entitled to free or concessionary travel on buses, trains, trams, or the tube if you are disabled.

You can obtain a 'Freedom Pass' or 'Concessionary Travel Pass' from your local Council, but you need to be getting DLA (Disability Living Alowance) at the higher rate. You will need to provide a copy of entitlement when applying.

Here is the website for the 'Freedom Pass' which is available to residents of London boroughs. You will need to find the website of your local council or contact them if you want further information and you do not live in London.

Also, if you're a Londoner, you may be entitled to the TaxiCard Scheme. Unfortunately, this does not entitle you to free taxis, but it offers a discounted rate. It may be worth looking into anyway. Look here for more info.

I definitely make use of my Freedom Pass as it's quite handy that there's a bus-stop right outside our house!! Great for when I've gone shopping!!

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Yeah great idea!

Unfortunately my application was refused on the basis I am not claiming DLA. I was also refused a blue badge as I can walk further than 200 yards.

Ah well.

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Mandy,

That's a shame. :(

But sometimes it pays to be selective about the info. that you give on these forms, if you know what I mean! ;)

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I haven't been to London since my bilateral BK amputations, but you make it sound rather complicated to get a blue parking placard. Here in the States (at least in PA), it's a case of getting a doctor to sign a form for the state to issue the placard - or a "handicpped" license plate. These items are recegnized in all the states - also in Canada.

London is a beautiful city, but as I recall riding the Underground wound be quite a challenge. One station involved stairs, a lift, and a rather fast-running escalator. And when they say "Mind the Gap", they do mean GAP! To an old DBKA on crutches, it would be quite an adventure.

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Dick,

I wish it was as simple here as it is there regarding getting certain things. For example, to get a few of the 'perks' of being disabled, you have to be getting Disability Living Allowance (DLA) at the higher rate. I was lucky enough to have my social worker fill out my form whilst I was still in hospital (for when I came out) and barely walking with a walker, let alone with crutches. But I've heard of many amputees who've filled out this form, but they were not allowed to receive this benefit. This was probably because they answered honestly that they COULD walk further than 200 yards. From what I have seen, they have been penalised for it. The system in the UK rarely make allowances, such as arguing that an amputee would not get very far without their prosthetic leg, etc.

Now, to qualify for other things, like the Blue Badge and Concessionary Travel Passes, you would need to be receiving DLA at the higher rate. They make some exceptions, but I think that these are not too common.

Regarding tube travel, I completely agree! I was a regular tube traveller before, but I have not ventured there since my amputations! :o I could probably pick the most acessible stations, and would probably get by ok, but seeing as the buses can take you anywhere you want, I always end up catching the bus instead! I'm taking the easy way out! :lol:

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Mandy, if you go to your local Citizens Advice Bureau, they will help you fill out the forms. Unfortunately in this country you are penalized for being a totally honest person, sometimes you have to tell a couple of 'white lies'. I have been refused DLA twice. That last time I asked for the decision to be looked at again (which is different from an appeal) a doctor came out to examine me and finally I have been accepted, but I have only been given it for one year up to now. Don't give up, I applied for the second time on 5th November last year and was accepted on 4th May, best thing is they do back pay to the original application date. It is a lot of red tape, form filling and phone calls, but you must not give up, that is what they want you to do, you are entitled. It makes me so angry, do they expect us to grow new limbs or what!!!! :blink:

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Thanks for the suggestions Pam and Afet.

I guess I am too honest. I also feel that I do not need DLA or these concessions as much as other people so I won't be pursuing it any further. Of course if my condition deteriorates I will apply again. The only time it would help is when I go out and would like to park close to the venue to avoid walking for miles. You know what parking is like in London! (non-existent :blink: )

I manage quite well on the London tube but they are definitely NOT geared for people with disabilities......also parents with prams (as my friends keep telling me). A lot of the stations I use only have stairs - no lifts or escalators. Busses are a lot better.

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Mandy,

I received my blue badge long before I applied for DLA, you need the support of your GP for that. It does make life a lot easier. I don't use it all the time but is there if I am having a really bad day. Go and see him and explain your situation. Hope he's the understanding type.

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Remember when filling in the DLA form when they ask how far you can walk they are talking about on a bad day e.g. stump swelled and unable to wear your leg ask yourself how far can you walk then?

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Remember when filling in the DLA form when they ask how far you can walk they are talking about on a bad day e.g. stump swelled and unable to wear your leg ask yourself how far can you walk then?

Exactly. When I filled out the forms I got my local Disability advice centre to help and they said I must fill it out as if it were my worst day ever. Youre not being dishonest - you need these things for the days it IS bad :)

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:P Hi guys, I'm a DBKA and can walk quite a few miles unaided, I also receive DLA and a blue badge. It's great to know if you can't park where you need to, just get the badge out and block the road. (only joking)

Being honest is a great policy but it's not easy at the best of times, so anything you can get to make life a little easier the better.

Don't lie, just bend the truth.

Best wishes,

Mike.

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i got refused DLA mainly because of the job i do (or did, i was a carer at the time- doh!)

but i have a blue badge because i was getting quite severe hip pain and i went to my GP and he thought it was how i was having to get out of my car in tight spaces, so he sorted a blue badge for me, and my hip pain has improved quite a lot!

L xxxxx

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Just getting to the 8 week point with my DLA application. I've received a letter apologising for not having made a decision and informing me that if eligible I will not lose money as it will be backdated. I'm really after the allowance because I want to get a car adapted for me to drive and the motability scheme seems the best way to go. All the heel dragging is just time wasted when I could have more independance and not have have someone drive me around all the time. If I'm refused then fine I'll finance my own transport but I don't want to waste money if I can have the allowance.

I'm thinking of sending a picture asking the "decision maker" (an oxymoron if ever I've heard one) if he/she can spot the new toes growing on the end of my stump. If they can't, pay up the damned cash and stop P%@@%*g me around.

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I've looked at the criteria for receiving DLA, and it clearly states that you should assume you are using any walking aids including artificial limbs... I am an AK amputee and have not had a day in 20 years where I could wear my limb (I realise I'm lucky). Some days are better than others admittedly, but I don't even nearly fulfil the criteria required for reciept of DLA.

Why would I 'deserve' it? why would it be my 'right' to receive it? It should be kept for those that NEED it, not for those of us who think they 'deserve' it, or have a 'right' to it, so they can finance a car. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to have the taxpayer buy me a car, but I don't understand why they should, just because I have one leg.

I'm grateful enough to the taxpayer for the limb and the £1000s spent on the fitting and maintenance of it.

...'bending of the truth', 'little white lies' etc., they are just lies, pure and simple... these phrases are used to help you justify your lies to yourself... it stinks

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I'd like to add that I'm also grateful to the driver who pulled across the road into the path of my mototrbike and gave me the wonderful opportunity to join this forum and experience the full range of taxpayer funded treatment. I always wondered what sort of people I was defending the rights of, when I was serving in the Navy. Now I know :ph34r:

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I'd like to add that I'm also grateful to the driver who pulled across the road into the path of my mototrbike and gave me the wonderful opportunity to join this forum and experience the full range of taxpayer funded treatment.

Likewise...

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I've looked at the criteria for receiving DLA, and it clearly states that you should assume you are using any walking aids including artificial limbs... I am an AK amputee and have not had a day in 20 years where I could wear my limb (I realise I'm lucky). Some days are better than others admittedly, but I don't even nearly fulfil the criteria required for reciept of DLA.

Why would I 'deserve' it? why would it be my 'right' to receive it? It should be kept for those that NEED it, not for those of us who think they 'deserve' it, or have a 'right' to it, so they can finance a car. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to have the taxpayer buy me a car, but I don't understand why they should, just because I have one leg.

I'm grateful enough to the taxpayer for the limb and the £1000s spent on the fitting and maintenance of it.

...'bending of the truth', 'little white lies' etc., they are just lies, pure and simple... these phrases are used to help you justify your lies to yourself... it stinks

If youve not had one day in 20 years that youve felt you needed the extra help then good for you. My point was for those of us who do have days when that help is sorely needed then they shouldnt feel bad about asking for it.

There are many different degrees of disability and that is taken into account. For example I get the higher rate for mobility, as I need help getting around, and the lower for care as I can wash and prepare food for myself.

As a result of this help my quality of life is vastly improved and helps me to think about living rather than my restrictions.

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I've looked at the criteria for receiving DLA, and it clearly states that you should assume you are using any walking aids including artificial limbs... I am an AK amputee and have not had a day in 20 years where I could wear my limb (I realise I'm lucky). Some days are better than others admittedly, but I don't even nearly fulfil the criteria required for reciept of DLA.

Why would I 'deserve' it? why would it be my 'right' to receive it? It should be kept for those that NEED it, not for those of us who think they 'deserve' it, or have a 'right' to it, so they can finance a car. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to have the taxpayer buy me a car, but I don't understand why they should, just because I have one leg.

I'm grateful enough to the taxpayer for the limb and the £1000s spent on the fitting and maintenance of it.

...'bending of the truth', 'little white lies' etc., they are just lies, pure and simple... these phrases are used to help you justify your lies to yourself... it stinks

If youve not had one day in 20 years that youve felt you needed the extra help then good for you. My point was for those of us who do have days when that help is sorely needed then they shouldnt feel bad about asking for it.

There are many different degrees of disability and that is taken into account. For example I get the higher rate for mobility, as I need help getting around, and the lower for care as I can wash and prepare food for myself.

As a result of this help my quality of life is vastly improved and helps me to think about living rather than my restrictions.

Everyone has good and bad days, and no one wants you to feel bad about asking for help on those occassions you need it.

I just don't think it's right for someone who normally speaking gets around OK, to be paid a load of cash out of the public purse just incase they have the odd 'bad day'.

I'm not persoanlly talking about you, I don't know anything about you, I'm talking about those amputees and others who get around more than adequately most of the time, getting out of brand new cars (paid for by Mobility benefit) after having just parked in a disabled parking space using their blue badge. All because they 'bent the truth' or 'told some white lies' to receive the benefits they believe they are 'entitled to'.

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Obviously it'd have to more than the "odd bad day" but people can get confused and "too honest" if you like. A few of them CAN walk more than 200yds, but can they do it without being in alot of pain? Or wiped out for few days after? You are actually advised to fill it out as though it were one of the bad days - though they dont say that on the form of course.

I guess people need to think - do the bad days outweigh the good now?

Of course no-one agrees that people who are fine should get it, but then thats why they get in touch with your doctor.

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I think it is sad that people have to bend the truth, as well. Until I became an amputee and after I turned 18, I never had one of those blue cards. I felt there were people who needed the spaces more than me...after all I could walk adequately if not better.

Now after spending 2 summer's in AZ without one, I am going to get the letter from my Doc. I am constantly burning my hands on my wheelchair wheels, cuz it gets so hot going across a parking lot.

I do know that you DO have to bend the truth from time to time...and you shouldn't have too. If "real" disabled peeps didn't have to bend the truth, just give proof of disability, then the people who are less than disabled (in lack of a better phrase) wouldn' t have such an easy time getting benefits.

(sorry if it doesn't make a lot of sense---got a cold, and stuffy head) :huh:

:blink:

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It's a vicious circle - the added checks are put in because of benefits cheats so now those who really need it have to jump through hoops to justify it.

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I had my accident in 1972, I had a blue badge for the first time in January this year, after the doctor advised me to apply. I very often had struggled, maybe, unnecessarily, for 32 years and for a great deal of time with two small children and suffering a great deal of pain, so I have no qualms now about parking in a disabled spot or getting out of a brand new car I obtained from motability and even when I've had my op and hopefully received my prosthesis (which I class as a walking aid) I will still use my badge and car.

Just for the record I would love never to have had to have either of these things, but who is to say what life has in store for us.

Best Wishes

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Well said Pam. Like you I never applied for a Blue Badge or DLA until a few years ago when walking became difficult and parking spaces limited. Having said that, if I am in the supermarket and there is plenty of space near the entrance, I will use one of them and only use the Disabled space if that isn't possible.

Ann

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I don't receive (nor have I applied for) either DLA or a Blue badge as I can get around fine and don't think I particularly deserve either.

Sometimes I do have difficulty getting into and out of my car though if somebody has parked close beside me. I wonder if the government shouldn't be slightly more generous with the blue badges, as there are often plenty disabled spaces (which are often used by very undisabled people!) and I certainly think it would make life easier to have a wider parking bay to get in and out, as well as saving the paintwork of adjacent cars!

Mike

RBK

Scotland

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