Luge like launch ramp!!!
This review is especially helpful for those who have or use the following: Wheelchair
Here is a copy of an email I've sent to Tigerlily - They responded saying that they'd refer it to the management, who still haven't go back to me. I recently celebrated my 30th anniversary with my wife at Tigerlily the day is showery and I have called ahead to ensure that wheelchair accessibility isn’t going to be an issue, of which I’m reassured by the staff, who say that the premises are fully accessible. On arrival the staff promptly unveil the access ramp, which immediately has my wife in a panic “promise me you’ll let me push you?” to which upon seeing the angle of the ramp, I assure her there’s no way in hell I’ll get up that ramp without help! I am a T6 Paraplegic, although I have good” Normal” hand and arm function, I weigh 80 kg and when I could walk, I was 1.78 m tall 5’10” in old money. So, I am strong and not overweight, I am also a confident independent wheelchair user and can manage getting around the bumpy, off camber, potholed streets of Edinburgh confidently, so there’s not much which will phase me, however the prospect of this ramp did fill me with some doubts. Now the ramp has been unveiled and I have assured my wife that there’s no way that I can make the ramp unassisted, I also ask that as she has heeled shoes, she will not be able to be the one who assists me, and I ask the kind staff to provide a few strong men to do the necessary. At this point a light shower starts just to add lack of adhesion to the ramp equation, so with an assembly of burly men ready to aid me, we make our attempt which given all the above, my strength/weight/capability and the assist, it’s not without its drama. Once we have made halfway up the assistants boots slip on the ramp and fear grips me as the angle which I am now, seems to threaten an uncontrolled fall back to pavement level, only when I push upon the hand rims of my wheelchair does momentum upward restore, and the assistant is able to regain his grip/composure. Alas I can make the top step and salvation of the restaurant bar. Now at this point we should be enjoying the wonderful food and ambiance of the whole experience, but neither my wife nor I can truly relax as we are filled with the prospect that, we need to negotiate egress from the building down that same “Luge like” launching ramp!! This did mar the enjoyment of the afternoon as we both had misgivings, my wife even suggesting that we take up permanent residence, to stave off the inevitable “excitement” of exiting the premises. Upon finishing our meal and drinks, all fabulous as we’ve come to expect, we now had the reverse process to contend with and the wonderful staff were on hand to provide assistance. So with the ramp in position, noticeably the very top edge of the ramp which juts out proud of the top step, to create a lip which has to be negotiated, as if the challenge wasn’t hard enough I now have to get over this edge too! Having assembled the troops and drilled the guys with what I need, we’ve agreed that unless I shout for help or start to obviously lose control, at no point should they touch me or my chair as this will cause me to lose control/balance. We are agreed that I will back wheel balance going down the ramp unassisted forwards, but as the ramp is restricting access for patrons coming in, a gathering of people has assembled at street level, and add to the ensemble an extremely nervous female staff member who is imploring her work colleagues to stop me from what I’m doing and to take me down the ramp backwards. “He’s going to fall out, stop him, stop him!” Doesn’t really add to my confidence nor having an assembled audience to witness the show. However all goes to plan, I control my descent having negotiated the jutting edge at the top of the narrow ramp, which has no grip tape to assist when wet, down the exceedingly steep decline and safely onto the hard unyielding streets to a crowd of witnesses, some of whom clap, one bloke who ventures “Well done mate, that was impressive” With the best will in the world, the access is very much dictated around a very old building but I do think that you’ll agree from my account that this is hardly an ideal set up. There are so many ways that this can/needs to improve as I would love to come back and be able to enjoy the hospitality without pensively worrying about my means of exiting the building. A few suggestions would be, a larger ramp as in wider and longer, this would reduce the angle at which the ramp approaches the top step, wider would allow assistants to be able to walk up two abreast, grip tape on the ramp so that should it be wet there is still ample adhesion, another solution would be a wheelchair stair climber which I have used in Barrowlands in Glasgow. This stair climber strapped my chair in and basically went upstairs backwards one step at a time, this took out the stress on all concerned and could be operated by only one person, although two were in attendance.
Transport & Parking
Centre of Edinburgh is always going to be an issue for parking but on this occassion we managed perfectly, the original plan had been to get the train in and just push up from Waverley but as it was a miserable day we opted for the car instead.
See the opening statement - The access arrangements are not really fit for purpose, I have no way of understanding how someone would fair who is unable to self propel or who is overweight or unfit.
Toilets were perfect for my needs, as I do ISC's I don't need to transfer, so no issue
Staff were wonderful and very attentive.