Years And Years star Ruth Madeley claims a taxi driver took her wheelchair away from her and refused to give it back as they argued.
The BAFTA-nominated actress says she had an argument with the driver outside of London’s Euston train station when he locked her wheelchair away in the boot of his vehicle.
The 33-year-old said the man refused to drop her outside Euston’s accessible entrance because heavy traffic made it “too difficult” and it would “take too long”.
The actress, who has spina bifida, said the driver told her he had seen her stand up and “knew” she could walk before demanding the fare, despite the journey actually being pre-paid.
During the dispute, Ruth said he took her wheelchair, put it in the boot of his car and refused to give it back.
She wrote on Instagram : “When I tried explaining this on the street, he became very agitated &, in sheer frustration, HE TOOK MY WHEELCHAIR from behind me without warning & carried it away to put in the boot of his taxi, leaving me on the side of the road.
“When I asked for it back, he refused.”
She added that she was travelling with her mother, who was able to recover the chair from the driver “although he tried his best to stop her”.
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Transport for London described the incident as “utterly appalling” and said it would investigate what had happened.
Graham Robinson, TfL’s general manager for taxi and private hire, said in a statement: “This sounds like an utterly appalling incident.
“We have contacted Ruth for more details so we can carry out a full and urgent investigation.”
Ruth said she had reported the incident to the Metropolitan Police but was told it was not a “hate crime”.
“I was shut down & made to feel as though I was making a fuss over nothing,” she added.
The incident occurred last month on the day it was announced that Ruth would star in BBC Two’s factual drama Independence Day? How Disabled Rights Were Won, co-written by BAFTA-winning screenwriter and playwright Jack Thorne.
Screenwriter Russell T Davies, TV presenter Lucy Alexander and actress Anna Nightingale were among those who shared messages of support.