Derby

Disabled man spent hours on Ibis hotel floor in Reading

Richard Shakespeare Image copyright Richard Shakespeare
Image caption Richard Shakespeare felt the employee who assisted him was not familiar with how to help him

A disabled man spent about two hours on a hotel floor when the emergency cord in the bathroom did not work.

Richard Shakespeare, who has cerebral palsy, fell when he was staying at the Ibis hotel on Friar Street in Reading.

The 36-year-old said he pulled the red cord for help, but when no-one came he used his mobile to get a friend in another room to call reception.

The hotel said the faulty cord would be replaced and admitted staff had "fallen short" of its procedures to assist.

Mr Shakespeare, who is from Derby and works in Leicestershire, said he walked to the bathroom with his stick and "lost his balance" on the night of 16 January.

"It's the first time I had to pull an emergency cord and made an automatic assumption that something would happen and a process in place," he said.

"I waited, but nobody came.

"I couldn't reach the hotel phone, so I called a colleague from my phone, who rang reception for help."

Image copyright Richard Shakespeare
Image caption Richard Shakespeare said he had to call a colleague to get help from reception

Mr Shakespeare said the employee, who said he was on his own, accessed his room more than an hour later and struggled to help him on to his bed.

He said he "got a blank look" when he asked the man why there was a delay in assisting him and what their procedures were.

Mr Shakespeare added that the experience highlighted a lack of awareness and training about how to assist a disabled person.

A spokesperson for Ibis said: "Regrettably, the correct procedures for attending to the guest, and subsequently for how to assist them once the room was accessed, were not followed.

"We acknowledge that on this occasion we have fallen short of the standards we expect and wholeheartedly apologise to Mr Shakespeare for his experience."

It added that it was "re-instigating training with urgency".

Follow BBC East Midlands on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Send your story ideas to eastmidsnews@bbc.co.uk.