Dennis and Mr Q lead Royal Mile Guide Dogs march

Dennis Robertson MSP and his trusty guide dog Mr Q led the way for the way for the annual Guide Dogs’ awareness and fundraising of week, which kicked-off in Edinburgh today.

The walk set off from the Castle Esplanade and Dennis and Mr Q were joined by over 50 others walking down the Royal Mile to Holyrood Park Education Centre where there was an opportunity for members of the public to try a blindfold walk with a guide dog or experience some sighted guiding from a trained volunteer.

Dennis Robertson, SNP MSP for Aberdeenshire West, said:

“I do a lot of travelling and my guide Mr Q is totally essential to assisting me getting around – he allows me to be independent.

“People love Mr Q and take to him straight away – very often they take to him faster than they take to me!

“I have had six different guide dogs and Mr Q is the most efficient and professional I have ever worked with – he is a very special boy and he gives me a better outlook on life.”

Colin Gallagher, Mobility Team Manager for Edinburgh, added:

“Blind and partially sighted people overcome extraordinary challenges everyday to live independently and do the things that the rest of us take for granted.

“For Guide Dogs Week 2012, we’re asking people to step into our world.

Whether they come along to our event and try walking in blindfold, or organise their own challenge. We’re sure it will open people’s eyes.”

Notes -

Dennis Robertson MSP lodged a motion at the Scottish Parliament which has gained cross party support:

http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/parliamentarybusiness/28877.aspx?SearchType=Advance&ReferenceNumbers=S4M-04092&ResultsPerPage=10