"It's horrendous trying to get around. I feel like I don't exist as a member of the public anymore..."
Getting trapped in a Marks and Sparks revolving door didn't phase disabled wheelchair user and campaigner Sharon Hooley, who encounters such problems every time she ventures out into Salford or Manchester.
On Tuesday evening, Sharon and fellow wheelchair user, TJ, decided to go shopping in the new Marks and Spencer store in No 1 Spinningfields but they found that the disabled entrance was not accessible, and a poster telling them to use the revolving door by pushing a blue button.
"I pushed the blue button, it slowed down and I then gently manoeuvred my electric wheelchair in" Sharon recalls "But as the doors took away the spaces between the back of the chair and front of the chair, before opening up any gap on the other side of this door, it jammed. No one could get in or out.
"As people started to pile up at the back of me they realised I was stuck and wondered why no one had come out to help" she adds "It was another few minutes when I was approached by a M&S guy, and I asked him why they deemed this door accessible when it definitely wasn't.
"I was then told that I should have used the other manual doors....I said 'Where?'; there was no notice up to say where the nearest alternative doors were, just that this was the only accessible entrance" she explains "The design is completely stupid. Then, as we were on our way out, a guy tried to say that it wasn't M&S's fault but totally down to those that repair and maintain the building.
"I was able to laugh my ordeal off but anyone with a standard size electric/power chair would get completely stuck and could cause a lot more serious problems" she insists.
A Marks and Spencer spokesperson apologised for the mishap and will be contacting Sharon: "Ensuring our stores are accessible for everyone is really important to us and we're sorry that on this occasion we let our customer down" they told the Salford Star "The main door to our store has been fixed and we'll be speaking to No.1 Spinningfields about alternative access should this happen again."
However, the experience was nothing particularly novel for Sharon, who wants to use the episode to highlight the plight of disabled people getting around Salford and Manchester...
"This is just one incident in many that I have to endure" she says "In my opinion, and I'm sure a lot of other disabled people will agree too, that Manchester and Salford care very little when roads are being dug up and buildings being cornered off while they are being built.
"I've had to put myself in danger more or less every week because ramps have not been put down, or not enough space has been left on the path to get the wheelchair past safely. It's horrendous trying to get around. I feel like I don't exist as a member of the public anymore."
Meanwhile, Sharon's friend, TJ, who was with her throughout the ordeal, underlines the point...
"This is not an isolated case" he explains "Most of the footpaths to the Manchester City Centre have been closed due to development of the surrounding area but the law states that there has to be temporary access of 1.4m wide and ramps put down for wheelchair users.
"However, many, many pavements within Manchester and Salford have been blocked off, forcing wheelchair users to drive on the road" he adds "There now seems to be a lack of disability awareness of those who work in supermarkets and the development industry within Manchester and Salford. This, in my opinion, is a huge equality breach and must stop before a disabled person gets injured or even killed..."