Holidays and Days Out

How airports and airlines are becoming autism-friendly

Sam Saunders from Omniserv on How airports and airlines are becoming autism-friendly

OmniServ is the biggest provider of assistance for disabled passengers in the UK. Samantha Saunders, its Head of Innovation & Regulatory Compliance, explains why everyone gains when we adapt surroundings and working practices to help people with autism.

I recently came across an example of an airport operator going out of its way to welcome autistic children to the world of flying. Their ‘Flying With Autism’ campaign gave 60 children with autism the chance to experience all the regular airport procedures, board a plane and taxi to the runway, before returning to the gate. Airport lighting was changed to predominantly blue, to reflect the global ‘Light It Up Blue’ autism awareness campaign.

Gitcombe retreat offers accessible holidays in Devon

Gitcombe retreat offers accessible holidays in Devon

Gitcombe’s exclusive collection of nine 4* and 5* luxury self-catering properties now includes a 'Retreat' ideal for those with mobility needs to take accessible holidays.

To mark its recent expansion, owners father and son, Rodney and Peter O’Brien, have partnered with national holiday letting agency cottages.com. The partnership will bring guests from across the UK to their luxurious holiday properties in South Devon, including its newly built Retreat for large gatherings.

Ardmaddy Estate & Cottages

Ardmaddy Estate & Cottages

Ardmaddy Estate sits in a quiet corner of Argyll, on the west coast of Scotland.  Just half an hour from the fishing and ferry port of Oban it allows for easy access to shops, ferries, and exploration of the wider area – but at the end of the day you can return to your own little haven of peace and quiet.

Many people don’t go far away when they are staying here, choosing instead to enjoy the peace, the views, the birds and wildlife.  We have many species that thrive on the land and waters at and around Ardmaddy – golden eagles, sea eagles, ospreys, buzzards, herons, otters, seals, pine martens, red squirrels, roe deer, stoats, and much more thrive in the environment that is as unspoiled as possible.

Accessible holiday home now available at top Cornish holiday park

Accessible holiday home at top Cornish holiday park

Pentewan Sands Holiday Park has just got more accessible thanks to a brand new wheelchair-friendly holiday home available to hire.

The five-star family friendly holiday park based in Cornwall’s beautiful Mevagissey Bay, with stunning views across the park’s privately owned beach, now offers a completely accessible holiday home featuring all the latest home comforts for guests looking for a break by the sea.

The new holiday home has been thoughtfully designed to ensure it is easy for wheelchair users to stay in, and offers accessible space and comfort with a sense of style.

Visit Somerset website puts accessibility first!

View of Somerset

Visit Somerset offers a wealth of information on exploring the county – from things to do, shopping and holiday accommodation. The newly launched site also puts the focus firmly on accessibility. It’s one of the UK’s first official tourism websites that features Browsealoud technology to give online users a little extra help whenever they need it.

Visit Somerset offers a wealth of information on exploring the county – from things to do, shopping and holiday accommodation. The newly launched site also puts the focus firmly on accessibility. It’s one of the UK’s first official tourism websites that features Browsealoud technology to give online users a little extra help whenever they need it.

Making accessible holidays easier to find

accessible holidays – the Rings interior of a cottage

Moira Henderson has dedicated herself to making accessible holidays easier to find in Fife, for as many people as possible. And she’s doing such a great job, Prince Charles recently presented her with an MBE. Editor Victoria Galligan asked Moira about her crusade and her cottages The Rings, which can sleep up to 16 people.

Q&A with accessible holidays champion Moira Henderson

When did you first become involved in the hospitality industry?

 Legoland Windsor offers superb accessibility – review

accessibility – ​UCan2's editor visited Legoland Windsor

If your family has accessibility issues, finding a day out can be somewhat of a nightmare at times – ​so ​UCan2 editor Victoria Galligan visited Legoland Windsor to see how accessible the park is, and how scary the rides are, too! Read her review of the park here…

Although Legoland Windsor’s latest attraction has a horror theme, you won’t be left trembling when trying to organise your day out there.

I went along with my family to see how staff at the block-built wonderland have been working with the Business Disability Forum to ensure they are meeting the needs of disabled customers and delivering the best customer experience possible.

Glendurgan Garden to improve accessibility for visitors

Man in mobility scooter in Glendurgan Garden

Glendurgan Garden, a National Trust property near Falmouth, recently introduced a brand new all-terrain mobility scooter, to help improve access for visitors.  

The all-terrain mobility scooter, known as a ‘Tramper’, allows visitors with mobility limitations to explore the Cornish gardens more fully, as well as visiting areas previously viewed as too difficult for them to access. 

Trampers are specifically designed to travel easily over uneven ground; allowing them to go up and down slopes, over bumps and tree roots, as well as through shallow puddles and mud.  

Revitalise Accessible Breaks

Hampshire - Revitalise Accessible Breaks

Every Revitalise break includes a package of accessible excursions, live entertainment and activities, supported by CQC-regulated nurse-led care.

Each holiday centre in Chigwell, Southport and Southampton is purpose-built, offering fully accessible accommodation on a full-board basis.

Other features of the holidays include specialist equipment, five different Care Support Packages to ensure every guest has the care they need, and dedicated volunteers who add to the fun-filled environment.

The charity’s holidays provide much-needed opportunities to make memories or try something new. The three, four and seven-night packages will mean exciting shared experiences, respite and new friendships for those who are disabled and for the friends and family who join them. 

Vulcan Lodge Cottages

Vulcan Lodge Cottages Exterior

Vulcan Lodge Cottages was created by the conversion of a lovely old country inn.  It sits just off the A470 which gives easy access yet is only 100 metres from the River Wye which runs at the rear of the cottages.  

Each cottage has its  own private entrance and four of the cottages are located entirely on the ground floor.  Two of these – the MIDDLETON AND TUDOR have been specially adapted to provide for guests with disabilities and have easy level access from the car park, large wet rooms and a range of equipment to assist guests – a wheelchair, shower chair, shower wheelchair, shower/commode wheelchair, walking frame, mobility scooter.  The Tudor has an electric tip and tllt easy chair.

Moors Valley Country Park brings visual impairment into focus with exciting new guide  

Moors Valley Country Park lake

Moors Valley Country Park in Dorset has launched a new Large Print guide to help people with visual impairment to enjoy their visit to the park more; by giving them information in a format that makes it easier to read and understand.

The guides are specifically aimed at visitors with some sight, but who have difficulty with everyday activities, like reading and recognising faces, such as Macular Degeneration or Glaucoma. The guides may also be beneficial for visitors who have dyslexia or where English is their second language.

The Glen Clova – Accessible Self-Catering Caravan in Blairgowrie, Perthshire, Scotland

The Glen Clova – Accessible Self-Catering Caravan

Wood Leisure is delighted to announce the launch of our new accessible caravan holiday home at Blairgowrie Holiday Park.  This contemporary caravan is designed to provide wheelchair users and their families with safe, easy access in a relaxing and comfortable environment. 

Our accessible two bedroom model features two twin bedrooms and a wet room.  Contemporary open-plan lounge/dining room and well equipped kitchen making it ideal for couples and families up to 4.  With full central heating and double glazing offering extra comfort whatever the weather.

About Our Accessible Caravan Holiday Home

The Hytte – Accessible self-catering holiday cottage near Hexham in Northumberland

The Hytte – Accessible self-catering holiday cottage near Hexham in Northumberland

The Hytte is award winning, accessible, self-catering accommodation for eight people. 

Guests love the character of this Norwegian inspired traditional timber Hytte or mountain lodge with its grass roof. Luxury rated as five star Gold and designed from the outset as a great “get together” venue which has been adapted to meet the needs of guests with disabilities, ensuring all family members and friends can enjoy a holiday together.

New Glamping Site Expands Near York

New Glamping Site Expands Near York

A luxury glamping site that opened less than a year ago is expanding thanks to the success of the business.

Wigwam® Holidays Ball Hall Farm, owned by the Medley family, is just outside the village of Storwood near York and is about seven miles from Pocklington, North Yorkshire.

The site, which currently has six Running Water Deluxe Wigwam® Cabins in place, is set to take delivery of three more deluxe cabins and three brand new Accessible Running Water Deluxe Cabins, which are suitable for wheelchair users and their carers. The additional cabins make a total of twelve units at the working farm site.

Emma Medley said: “We opened in June 2018 and had a busy first season, thanks to the glorious summer last year and to the quality of the en-suite Wigwam® Cabins

The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre

The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre

This great little award-winning Museum is aimed at 6 to 12 year olds and their families and is situated in the picturesque Chilterns village of Great Missenden where Roald Dahl lived and wrote for 36 years. The Museum has three fun and fact-packed interactive galleries. Boy Gallery focuses on Roald Dahl’s school days. Solo Gallery features his original Writing Hut. The Story Centre offers all sorts of fantabulous creative displays and activities to get involved with. In the school holidays and at weekends, an exciting range of workshops, events and free storytelling sessions take place.