If you have mobility impairments or sensory sensitivities, days out can be more challenging, and access to fundamental things (like toilets!) can make or break an activity or event!
So, for August Bank Holiday weekend we thought it would be nice to do a little round up of some of the accessible days out we’ve been on, along with some suggestions from our social media community, and some guides we’ve come across!
Changing Places & Mobiloo
Changing Places Toilets are toilets which provide greater accessibility than the average ‘disabled toilet’. For people who can’t transfer to the loo without help, they have more space, and a hoist if you require to be lifted to transfer from your wheelchair. They also include a bench for changing clothing or continence or sanitary products. Without access to a toilet like this, many people are limited in where or how long they can go out at all! The Changing Places Consortium have a map on their website to help find all the permanent facilities registered with them: Changing places map
Mobiloo are a not for profit organisation who provide mobile changing places toilets for temporary events, and you can search Mobiloo’s website for the events they will be attending here: Events with a mobiloo changing place toilet
It’s always worth asking local attractions if they have considered hiring a Mobiloo (especially for special events!), you never know!?
Disability Horizons produced this great guide to Accessible Festivals Across the UK! There are some still to come up, especially over bank holiday weekend, but this would be a great resource for narrowing down the options for festival next year! If you are anything like me, big outings like this, take a good amount of pre-planning!
National Trust and English Heritage Sites
The National Trust is beginning to look at changing places and have started hiring the Mobiloo at some sites . The Trust have been making improvements to access generally. As a family we usually find outdoor areas, cafe and shop to be pretty accessible on the larger sites. With young children we are not so fussed about looking around the properties at the moment, but they can be an access challenge!
English Heritage have also got a number of sites like Stonehenge that accessible toilets and better access for disabled visitors.
(Suzy Rigby on FB) “Alton towers is AMAZINGLY accessible - two changing places toilets, don’t need to queue for rides etc staff couldn’t do enough to support us with a wheelchair user and all over just incredible! Had an access guide on line so could know beforehand which rides we could and couldn’t access (we can do a transfer and there were only two rides in the whole park inaccessible!).”
Parks and the Great Outdoors
Olympic Park (@kg_womanarch1)
“The 2012 Olympics grounds in Stratford, London, is fully accessible with adult changing facilities”
Kirroughtree Visitor Centre (@BrodyMeandGDD)
We have visited here, the changing places toilet is lovely and there is an accessible walk through the forest as well as a lot of cycling, so even the ‘non-accessible’ paths are probably doable for a robust wheelchair.
The Deep (@hayley8931)
It is a aquarium in Hull with over 3000 creatures, including sharks and sawfish, plus plenty of activities for families
“The Deep have put in a very up to date changing room. Hoist and bed.”
Blair Drummond Safari Park (@Laura R) - how about visiting a Safari park so you can get up close to all the animals?
Whatever you do, hope you enjoy some sunshine over the weekend.