Borders businesses show real vision


Four businesses have won prizes in a special award scheme to highlight companies that do more to help blind and partially-sighted people.

The Go Shop Awards scheme – launched by the Royal National Institute of Blind People Scotland and announced yesterday – aims to encourage improvements that make services more accessible to people with sight loss.

The Borders winners were the Galashiels branches of the Royal Bank of Scotland, Asda, Hall Opticians, and J. Holmes Wilson Opticians in Melrose. All 21 award-winners, from across Scotland, were nominated by service-users with sight loss.

David Puller, manager of the Royal Bank of Scotland branch in Bank Street, said: “Our aim at all times is to provide a helpful banking service to every customer and I’m extremely honoured that we have been nominated for this award. This is a real tribute to the staff at the branch and we are all extremely proud of the award. I would also like to say thank you for the nomination and for all the support we receive from our customers.”

Nicky Hall, of Hall’s Opticians, said: “This is a great honour for our entire team. It is very important that businesses cater for people with sight loss as well as other disabilities.”

John Legg, director of RNIB Scotland, said: “For people with sight loss, the Go Shop Awards have provided hope that service-providers will listen and are prepared to make changes to the way they work to make their goods and services more accessible.

“For businesses, it has been an opportunity to learn about the challenges people face in their everyday activities. And this doesn’t necessarily have to mean elaborate or expensive changes. Several have commented on how the awards have transformed the way they think about the needs of blind and partially-sighted consumers, which was precisely the kind of response we were hoping for.

“We need to work together towards more practical solutions for people living with disabilities.”