Paralympic hero 'humiliated' after being forced to wet herself on train without accessible toilet

Anne Wafula Strike was left with no option but to wet herself. Credit: ITV News Anglia
  • Video report by ITV News Anglia's Russell Hookey

A Paralympian from Harlow says she's been left humiliated after she was forced to wet herself on a train because there was no working disabled toilet.

Wheelchair racer Anne Wafula Strike was on a three-hour journey from Coventry to Stansted Airport just before Christmas when she realised she needed to use the toilet - only to find it was out of order.

With no choice left but to try and hold on, the 42-year-old Kenyan-born athlete hid her face with a hoodie in embarrassment following the incident.

It was bolted up with a big sign saying 'Out of Order'. When the ticket collector came through, I explained my situation to her and she told me not to worry and said we'd get me off at the next stop. But unfortunately, when we got to the next stop, the station that she'd suggested had no one at the platform to help.

Anne Wafula Strike

While the staff member was apologetic, Anne says the experience has prompted her to speak out about the injustice those with disabilities have to face.

"To me, I felt the train company had reduced me to nothing," she told ITV News Anglia.

"For them not to care to repair the toilet, I felt robbed of so many things. They actually took my dignity away."

CrossCountry trains are investigating the incident. Credit: ITV News Anglia

A spokesperson for CrossCountry described the episode as "unacceptable" and added that an investigation is now underway.

"Clearly the circumstances of Mrs Strike's journey were unacceptable," the statement read.

"This is the first time we're aware of such a situation ever happening on one of our trains and we are still investigating how our establish procedures for caring for a customer in a wheelchair could have failed so terribly."

Anne is now calling on train operators to review their policies and provide more than the statutory minimum for their disabled travellers.