Mercure – Bowden Hall Hotel

Mercure – Bowden Hall Hotel

Bowden Hall | 8th June 2018

Parking

There are two designated disabled parking spaces, close to the front entrance of the building with big signs stating they are for disabled guests only.

Accessibility

There is a set of double doors to the main entrance which leads through to a single manual door to enter the hotel. There is also a low reception point so that a wheelchair user could check themselves in.

Café/Lounge

There is a lounge with a bar area where you can sit and have drinks, including complimentary tea or coffee. There is plenty of space for a wheelchair user to access this lounge and accessible tables and chairs to sit at.

The kitchen will cater for dietary requirement such as liquidised foods if you provide the food to do so.

Rooms

There are 72 rooms in the hotel, two of which are disabled friendly, they are on the first floor which is accessible via a platform lift. There is one twin and one double room with a walk-in shower and seat and there are adequate handrails to transfer. The bathrooms and the rooms are a bit tight and the beds are quite high which could be difficult to transfer to from a wheelchair.

They have vibrating pillows for the deaf and there are panic alarms by the bed. There is a refuge point in case of emergencies, to get here you turn left out of the room, along the corridor and turn right and it is at the end of the corridor.

Lakeside Suite

The Lakeside Suite is fully accessible, this is used mainly for weddings or businesses conferences. The seating area is up some stairs as you enter, there is a ramp if you carry on straight which goes up the side of the building. There is disabled toilet within the Suite which is at the bottom of the stairs and to the right. It is in the female toilets which isn’t signposted.

The Conference Room

The conference room is on the 2nd floor, this is not accessible for wheelchair users or somebody using a walking aid. The hotel is looking into getting a lift installed for the future, but this hasn’t been achieved yet. The hotel is a grade 2 listed building which causes some difficulties. The conference room is often used for wedding ceremonies, so it is worth considering this if you are attending/having a wedding here and have guests who will struggle with stairs. You can however also have the ceremony in the Lakeside Suite on the first floor.

Lift

There is a platform lift which leads up the first flight of stairs to the hotel rooms, the lift must be operated by a member of staff. There is a red phone which you can use to call reception next to the lift, or you can call from your rooms and somebody will come up and assist you. The lift is large enough for a wheelchair, but not for somebody to assist in the lift whilst operating. There is a weight limit of 225g so not suitable for large, heavy wheelchairs/scooters.

Toilets

There are two disabled toilets located in the hotel, one just past reception to the left and one in the Lakeside Suite, the facilities within both of these were all adequate for a wheelchair user apart from soap dispensers being just a little too high in one.

Customer Service

The general manager, Gavin very kindly took the time out of his day to show us around the hotel and answered all of our questions.

Accessibility Rating

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Bella Italia

Bella Italia

Bella Italia | 21st March 2017

Parking

There is lots of disabled parking in Gloucester Quays car park you can park here for free for 4 hours with a disabled badge.

Accessibility

There is a large accessible double door leading into the venue. The restaurant is all wheelchair accessible. They offer a larger print menu and a braille menu for the visually impaired.

The seating plan is open with quite a few booths. There are plenty of quite corners within the venue. The 4 corners of the restaurant have adjustable speakers, for those wanting a quieter meal. If you require your food to be liquidised they can offer this facility, or if not they are happy for you to bring in your own food.

The lighting is nice and bright in the restaurant and they allow guide dogs into the building.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located at the back of the building. The toilet is accessible for wheelchair users. It is large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in safely and there is enough room for a PA or family member to assist a wheelchair user. The toilet has a handrail for both transfer sides. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for wheelchair users.

Customer Service

The staff members were extremely friendly, very kind and well mannered. Dan the manager, was so lovely and helpful and he made our visit even more enjoyable. He was more than happy to take the time out of his day to answer our questions.

Accessibility Rating

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Nature in Art

Nature in Art

Nature in Art | 7th April 2017

Parking

There is disabled parking located at the front of the building for three cars.

Accessibility

There is a ramp leading into the front of the building making it easy for wheelchair users. You enter straight into the gift shop with a gallery to your right hand side. There is plenty of space to get about in a wheelchair.

There are three galleries within the building, two of which are upstairs. To access these galleries upstairs, there is a lift available on the ground floor. There is a ramp leading outside into the beautiful gardens, there is no gravel or path around the garden but it is easily accessible for wheelchair users especially during the summer months. Any carer with a disabled member has free entry.

There is an education centre located at the back of the gardens, they have art courses and activity days held here.

Lift

The lift is wheelchair accessible but is rather small, therefore, not large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in or enough space for a PA or family member to assist a wheelchair user. This would not be suitable for somebody that would need to be supervised to use the lift. The buttons are nice a low and easy to use for somebody that is able to use these.

Toilet

There is a disabled toilet located in the education centre. This is a large wheelchair accessible toilet, with space for a wheelchair to turn around in safely and a family member or PA to assist a wheelchair user. There are handrails for both transfer sides and the sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for wheelchair users.

Café

There is access to the coffee shop through the main building, or you can access the coffee shop using the ramp outside. The coffee shop is wheelchair accessible with an open seating plan. They offer A4 size menus for the visually impaired.

They have three special chalk boards located above the counter, for easy viewing.

The lighting in the coffee shop is nice and bright.

Accessibility Rating

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Bills

Bills

Bill’s | 14th March 2017

Parking

There is lots of disabled parking in Gloucester Quays car park you can park here for free for 4 hours.

Accessibility

There is an accessible entrance leading into the venue, with a large double door along the side on the building.

There are a lot of tables located around the restaurant. There is one booth located to the right-hand side of the restaurant if you wanted to get away from any noise, although the restaurant wasn’t overly noisy, there was some quiet music playing in the background. There is one long seated booth and a couple quiet corners.

There are a few special chalk boards with menu choices located around the building.

If you require your food to be liquidised they can help with this facility. If not they are happy for you to bring in your own food. They currently don’t offer a larger print menu, a braille menu or a hearing loop.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located at the back of the building. There is a ramp needed to access these toilets, the staff will help with accessing and using this ramp.

The toilets are accessible for wheelchair users, it is large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in and large enough for a PA or family member to assist a wheelchair user. The toilet has a handrail for both transfer sides. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for wheelchair users.

There is enough lighting, the toilets are nice and clean and safe to use.

Customer Service

The staff are friendly, helpful and well mannered. The manager Ella, took the time out of her day to show us around and answer our questions.

Accessibility Rating

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GL1 Leisure Centre

GL1 Leisure Centre

GL1 Leisure Centre | 22nd March 2017

Parking

There are 10 disabled parking spaces outside the front of the leisure centre.

Accessibility

There are two large, automatic doors leading into the venue.

For the swimming pool there are designated accessible toilets/changing rooms located on the ground floor. The one has a toilet, handrails for transfer sides and a walk in shower with a seat. The other changing offers exactly the same however, this one also offers a hoist, these changing rooms/toilets require a RADAR key.

The lockers and wristbands are charged at £1 each. This is the same for the ones in the gym. There are two main pools which offer a hoist. A trained member of staff will assist the wheelchair user when using the hoist. The most suitable time to use the pool for somebody with a disability is between 6.30am-9.00am which is the ‘Early Risers’ session and is the quietest time of day.

There are two disabled toilets/changing rooms for the gym, for male and female use. They are located on the first floor. The gym offers facilities to accommodate a wheelchair user and some of the machines in the gym can be operated by a wheelchair user. Once an induction has been completed by a trained member of staff, a PA or family member may assist a wheelchair user in the gym. It is advisable to book in advance for a PT session for a wheelchair user.

Lift

There is  a lift located to the right of the building, this will take you up to the gym. The lift is accessible for wheelchair users, it is not large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in but does have enough space for a PA or family member to assist a wheelchair user. The buttons are easy to reach on the outside and on the inside of the lift.

Customer Service

The staff members are very helpful, friendly and well mannered. The manager Chris took the time out of his day to show us around and answer our questions.

Restaurant/Café

The restaurant/café is accessible for wheelchair users, they serve food from 10am until 5pm. The menu choices are all up on the wall on a large board.

Accessibility Rating

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Victoria Pleasure Gardens

Victoria Pleasure Gardens

Victoria Pleasure Gardens | 6th June 2018

Parking

Gloucester Road Car Park is right on the doorstep to the gardens. There is only one disabled parking spot, however all the car park is easy to access. Blue badge holders can park for free.

Accessibility

Victoria pleasure gardens is a hidden beauty in Tewkesbury, they are tended to by ‘The Friends of Victoria Pleasure Gardens’ which is a volunteer group who joined together after the 2007 floods to bring life back to the gardens. The Borough Council mow the grass and the volunteers tend to the beautiful flower beds, they also have support from members and local charities to help with the costs.

There are three Archway entrances to the gardens, one from Gloucester Road Car Park, one on Gloucester Road and the last on Mill Street. All the entrances are accessible for wheelchairs, Mill Street being the most uneven of the three, however still manageable.

All the pathways around the gardens are fully accessible, they are nice and wide and the ground is even, the edges are neatly trimmed so it is easy to see. There are benches dotted around the gardens with space on the end of the benches for a wheelchair to sit so that you can sit with somebody who is at a bench. My wheelchair was able to mount the grass from the pathway if you wanted to sit on the grass – perfect for picnics! The gardens aren’t enormous, so don’t expect a day out here, but they are lovely to visit none the less.

You are right on the bank to the River Avon and at the one end to the gardens is the old Tewkesbury Mill and a Weir, there is quite a lot of noise created from the Weir, personally I find this quite relaxing however, others may find this too noisy.

Toilets

There are some public toilets located in Gloucester Road Car Park, there is one disabled toilet which requires a RADAR key. The disabled toilet has handrails for both transfer sides, and the facilities within the toilet are all at a lowered height for a wheelchair user. They are council public toilets, you are required to pay 20p for the non-disabled toilets. Considering they are public toilets, the cleanliness is pretty good. They are cleaned everyday at 6pm.

Customer Service

Rosemary from the friends of Victoria pleasure gardens very kindly took the time out of her day to show us around the gardens and answer all of our questions and talk all about her enthusiasm for the gardens.

 

Accessibility Rating

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Boston Tea Party

Boston Tea Party

Boston Tea Party | 1st June 2018

Parking

There is no customer parking but there are four/five designated disabled spots on Clarence Street within 100yds of the café for blue badge holders.

Accessibility

There are manual heavy doors to enter the cafe, there isn’t much space around the café to get around and it is quite small and not very accessible for a wheelchair. The manager Dale advised us that they offer table service if it was difficult for someone in a wheelchair to go and order at the bar, however we were waiting for over 10 minutes before anybody approached us.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located at the back of the building, however this is quite difficult to get to in a wheelchair due the lack of space. A customer had to get up off their chair for me to get my wheelchair to the toilet. Once inside the toilet it was good, there was adequate handrails and it was spacious.

Customer Service

Once my PA went up to the bar to notify Dale the manager that we were here, he was very helpful, he came and took our food order and showed us around the café and answered all our questions. He also came over to check if everything with okay with the food.

 

Accessibility Rating

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The Roses Theatre

The Roses Theatre

The Roses Theatre | 1st June 2018

Parking

There is no customer parking at the theatre, however, there are a few standard parking spaces on Sun Street if you can get a space. The closest public car park is Oldbury Road Car Park which is only approx. 100 yards away, there are four disabled bays here and you can park for free with a disabled badge.

Accessibility

There is an automatic double door to enter the building, which leads to a large foyer and the box office reception. There is a lowered section to the reception which makes it easy for somebody in a wheelchair to book and pay for their own tickets or to ask for help or advice. The café is immediately to the left which also leads to the auditorium.

When entering the auditorium, the immediate row as you go in is designated for disabled customers, they have two seats that are permanently removed for wheelchairs, however, the entire row of chairs can be easily removed and fits up to 11 wheelchairs. There are emergency exits on the end of each row which involves no stairs, as well as 4 other exits within the room. The entire row has the best seats in the house and a fantastic view of the stage giving a very enjoyable theatre experience.

It is advised to notify the theatre before arrival if you are in a wheelchair so they can ensure there is enough room for you in this row.

They offer audio description headsets for somebody who is blind or visually impaired which describes to somebody what is going on in the performance, they allow guide dogs into the building and they also offer subtitle screenings for the deaf. They also have parent and babies showings where they show PG, 12 and 15 rated films and parents can take along their babies/toddlers without the worry of them disturbing other viewers.

Upstairs next to the bar is a wide open space where they hold live music and comedy. This is all accessible.

The Roses Theatre – Tewkesbury Visit the website to see what shows are currently on.

Cafe

The café has some small tables and chairs in which were suitable for my wheelchair to fit under, they serve hot and cold drinks and some light snacks here. There is a small menu on the side of the wall but most of what is sold is on show over the counter. There is a lowered section to the counter.

Before entering the auditorium, there is also a small shop selling cold drinks, sweet and chocolates to enjoy the show with, again the bar is nice and low and easy for a wheelchair user.

Upstairs there is a bar serving other beverages as well as alcohol. To the left of the bar is a lowered section.

Toilets

There are two disabled toilets, one on each floor. The ground floor toilets are through the café and to the left, there are adequate hand rails for transfer and the sink, toilet roll dispenser is at an appropriately lowered height, including the mirror! The same applies for the first-floor toilet which is the larger of the two. The toilets have recently had a revamp and were nice and new and clean.

Lift

The lift is located at the back of the building through the café and past the toilets, the buttons are low and within reach for somebody using a wheelchair. The lift isn’t huge but was big enough for a wheelchair and two other people standing, to fit in at a squeeze. A wheelchair could not turn around within the lift.

 

Customer Service

Caroline, Head of Marketing, kindly showed us around the venue and gave us all the information required. She told us about their recent refurbishment at The Roses and when this took place they did it with accessibility in mind and she was happy to see they had done a good job following our feedback. She also advised how all of their staff have had Dementia Awareness Training to help their staff be better prepared for challenging behaviours.

Accessibility Rating

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Revolution

Revolution

Revolution | 30th May 2018

Parking 

There is no designated customer parking. There is nearby parking on the Promenade, where there are four disabled parking spaces, alternatively there are four/five disabled parking spaces outside the library. Each of these locations is about a 5-minute journey walking or in a wheelchair and you will require a blue badge permit.

Accessibility

There is a singe manual door propped open which has a small sharp lip but the wheelchair was able to get over it. This leads to a set of manual double doors.

There are two floors to the venue, the top floor is inaccessible due to there being no lift. However, everything you need is on the ground floor. The restaurant is on the ground floor but in a raised section up three steps, there is a portable ramp which can be brought out to get up these steps however, this was too steep for my electric wheelchair. This would only be suitable for a manual wheelchair.

There are tables on the lowered section however, they are too tall for a wheelchair user. Due to not being able to sit in the restaurant the staff moved a table down to the bar area for me to sit at and were more than happy to do so.

We visited on a lunchtime and there was some light music playing in the background, in the evening Revolution becomes more of a bar/nightclub and is a popular spot for drinks, therefore the music will be louder.

They currently don’t offer large print or braille menus, however, the manager has requested that we send some information over so they can look into it.

There are some secluded booths however, these are not accessible for a wheelchair. There is no lowered section to the bar however, they offer table service and you can pay at your table.

There is a nice friendly atmosphere in the bar and the drinks and food looks great, they also serve some delicious looking cocktails.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located at the back of the building underneath the stairs, a RADAR key is required to access this toilet, there is one to hand in the bar.

There are adequate handrails for transfer and the facilities are all at a lowered height for wheelchairs.

Customer Service

Abby, the assistant manager kindly took the time out of her day to show us around the venue and answer our questions. She brought our drinks over to our table and was very friendly and helpful.

Accessibility Rating

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Sherborne Cinema

Sherborne Cinema

Sherborne Cinema | 11th May 2018

Parking

There is parking located to the left of the building and there is one disabled spot.

Accessibility

There is a paved ramp leading into the front of the venue and there is a large accessible double door. The ticket booth is located on the left hand side, this is where you can purchase your tickets and also some snacks and drinks.

There is one cinema screen; this is where all the films are shown. The back row has space for three wheelchair users.The aisle is wider than your average cinema and you are welcome to sit on the end of the aisle in your wheelchair if it is a smaller wheelchair, this may be more suitable for somebody with a sight impairment so they can be closer to the screen. It is advisable to turn up early if you are in a wheelchair so the most suitable. It Is advisable to turn up early if you are in a wheelchair so the most suitable seat for you can be found before everybody else arrives.

They also offer headphones for the blind, this facility offers audio description through the headphones and guide dogs are welcome into the building.

There is a small porch over the main entrance to the cinema, this was added for sound proof. It makes it a little tight getting into the cinema.

Toilets

The toilets are on the right hand side of the building, the disabled toilet or ‘easy access toilet’ as Mark has called it, is at the end of the corridor on the left. The toilet is big enough for somebody to assist a wheelchair user and has suitable hand rails for transferring, The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all at a suitable lowered height.

Customer Service

Mark is an extremely friendly gentleman who has an obvious passion for film and has done a great job at keeping the traditional and personal touch within his cinema, it was a pleasure to meet him and I look forward to many more cinema trips in the future.

 

https://www.sherbornecinema.co.uk/programme Take a look at the website for up to date programme times

 

 

Accessibility Rating

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Dr Fosters

Dr Fosters

Dr Fosters | 11th May 2018

Parking

There is disabled parking located at the Herbert Warehouse or the Gloucester Docks car park where you can park for 3 hours for free with a blue badge, these spaces can be often be filled during busy times so you can also park in the Quays car park which isn’t far to walk or travel by wheelchair.

Accessibility

There are a set of stairs leading down to the entrance or a paved ramp to the left hand side, which leads to a large accessible double door. The restaurant is wheelchair accessible and the seating plan is open with lots of space and accessible tables. There are plenty of booths and quiet corners if you’d like to be out of the way.

There is an outdoor area with some benches which looks out onto the waterfront which is pleasant, there are some stairs leading out of the conservatory outdoors so this is only accessible for a wheelchair by going round the outside of the building via the front entrance. The staff are happy to show you round and help bring drinks over in this instance. The lower part to the conservatory is also accessible.

There is no lowered section of the bar which could make it a little difficult for wheelchair users to order drinks at the bar, especially if it is busy. You also need to place your food and drink order at the bar, which isn’t entirely obvious. They don’t offer a larger print menu or braille menu for the visually impaired or a hearing loop.

The lighting within the restaurant is nice and bright, there is quiet music playing in the background. They also allow guide dogs.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located to the left hand side as you enter the building. The toilet is wheelchair accessible, it is not large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in but there is enough room for a family member or PA to assist a wheelchair user. There are handrails for both transfer sides. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for wheelchair users.

Accessibility Rating

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Gloucester Guildhall

Gloucester Guildhall

Gloucester Guildhall | 2nd May 2018

Parking

You can enter the Guildhall directly from the Kings Walk car park, which is free after 6pm. You can park in here for up to 3 hours with a blue badge but you do need to complete an application form to get the electronic tag. To enter the building via the car park there is a steel ramp.

Accessibility

If you’re not entering the Guildhall via the Kings Walk car park, the main entrance is on Eastgate street. There is a singular automatic door and straight away steps leading up to the box office on level 1 or a lift which has access to all floors. All of the hallways across the venue are nice and wide and easy to navigate with a wheelchair. Considering the Guildhall is an old building, which is often where accessibility issues can be found, the accessibility across the venue is very good – wide entrances, hallways and big rooms.

The Guildhall monitor how many wheelchair users are in the building at the same time, due to the fact it is all above the ground floor. The maximum capacity is 8 people as this is the amount of wheelchairs they can get out of the building safely in the case of an emergency.

Guide dogs are allowed in the building.

Box Office

The box office is on the first floor and has a low reception point which makes it easy for a wheelchair user to communicate with staff on reception.

Cinema

The cinema is on the second floor, the main entrance for the cinema is down a small flight of stairs which is accessible via a platform lift and then up another platform lift to get into the cinema. There is a rear entrance to the cinema which cuts out the stairs, a member of staff will be happy to open this for you as it will be easier and quicker than using the platform lifts.

If you are in a wheelchair it is advisable to arrive a little earlier than the showing time for the film so that you can find the most suitable position for you. All of the seats within the cinema can be moved so you can sit wherever you prefer.

The Hall

There is a large entertainment hall which is on the second floor, to get to the hall you are required to use the door lift and the platform lift. The hall is used for concerts and gigs etc. There is tiered seating which can be folded away or extend across the hall it is large but would still be an intimate gig.

If the gig was standing it may be a little overcrowded and busy for someone in a wheelchair as there are no cornered off sections or anywhere specifically for disabled people. If it was seated the tiered seating would be inaccessible for a wheelchair but there would be plenty of space at the front.

There is a refuge point just behind the hall in case of an emergency where the emergency services will collect people in need of help, there is a flight of stairs leading to the refuge point which is a fire exit/staff only.

Café

The café is located on the second floor which is accessible via the door lift and platform lift, there is a wide entrance into the café, the tables are suitable for my wheelchair to fit under and the walkways are nice and wide. There is also a lower section to the bar on the righthand side. The menus are nice and light however, they don’t offer a larger print menu. The café uses local and fresh produce and can accommodate for vegan and gluten free.

Studio / Meeting Rooms

There is a studio room with a mirrored wall that can be used for dance lessons, there are also several meeting rooms of different sizes across the venue that can be hired out for meetings, events, conferences etc. Each of the rooms have a wide entrance and are easy to get in and out of.

Customer Service

Chris kindly showed us around the venue at short notice and gave us lots of information about the venue. On other occasions when I have visited the Guildhall all of the staff have been polite and helpful

Lift

The door lift to all floors is easy to use and large enough for my wheelchair and somebody to assist, although a slight squeeze. However it is not large enough to turn around in. The buttons are a low height and nice and big so easy to use.

There are two platform lifts on the second floor, there is a sign to ask a staff member for help but they were easy to use.

Toilet

There are three disabled toilets in the building, two on the second floor and one of the third floor. The toilet on the third floor is a little cramped so a large wheelchair user may find it easier to use one of the toilets on the second floor. However, it still had ramps for a left and right hand transfer and the sink and other facilities were all at a lowered height.

Both toilets on the second floor are larger and again all facilities at an appropriate height.

Accessibility Rating

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Museum of Gloucester

Museum of Gloucester

Museum of Gloucester | 2nd May 2018

Parking

There are two disabled parking spaces located outside the building with two drop kerbs to get off the road however, these are hard to access once parked in the disabled spaces, you have to go along the road until the end where there is a drop kerb. There is also St Michaels Square car park close by where you can use your blue badge for 3 hours free parking.

Accessibility

There is a ramp leading into the venue, with a large accessible automatic double door. The reception point is on the right-hand side, as you enter the building. There is a lower section of the reception desk for wheelchair access. There is plenty of space to move a wheelchair around. There are lots of easy access things to see within the lower ground floor. There are also listening options with easy to reach buttons for wheelchair users. Every part of the downstairs floor is accessible, with easy to go through arches for wheelchairs.

There is another floor which is accessible via the lift and plenty of space to move around on the first floor with lots to see and look at. There are also two art galleries located on the first floor. This is all accessible and easy to view from a wheelchair.

Café / Gift Shop

There is a self-service café located on the ground floor. There is a selection of hot drinks available and cold drinks in the fridge. The seating plan is open with lots of space for wheelchair users and accessible tables. There are also a couple of quiet corners.

There is also a fantastic little gift shop with lots of gadgets, books and memorabilia.

Customer Service

All the staff at the museum are extremely friendly and helpful. Angela took the time out of her day to show us around and answer our questions.

Lift

There is a lift located at the back of the building, which will take you up to first floor. The lift is accessible for wheelchairs, there is a double sided door so you drive into the lift and drive out the other side.

It is not large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in but there is room for a family member or PA to assist the wheelchair user. The buttons are easy to reach for somebody in a wheelchair and easy to use.

There is an Evac chair available at the top of the stairs, in case of emergencies.

Toilet

There are two disabled toilets on the ground floor, they aren’t large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in but they are large enough for somebody to assist. There are handrails for right and left hand transfer, the sink and hand dryer are at an appropriate height for a wheelchair however, the toilet paper dispenser and soap dispenser are a little high. The toilets are part of the public toilet scheme and are kept nice and clean.

Accessibility Rating

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Jury’s Inn

Jury’s Inn

Jurys Inn – Cheltenham | 27th April 2018

Parking

There are six disabled parking spaces located right at the front of the building with easy access into the hotel. There was also one disabled parking space in the rear car park close to the leisure centre. Once checked in it is easier to gain access via the leisure club entrance as it is closer to the hotel rooms and the same level, so you can avoid the platform lift to save time. The hotel can reserve you a space in the rear car park if requested.

Customer Service

The general manager, Peter Hendry kindly took the time out of his busy day to show me around the facilities in the hotel. He gave me lots of useful information and was very polite and friendly. All other staff in the hotel were well dressed and well mannered.

Accessibility

There is a paved entrance into the hotel with a small slope up to the automatic double doors and a lowered reception point. Most of the rooms in the hotel are accessible via the lift however, there are two specific rooms for disabled guests on the ground floor, each with wide doors to access the rooms.

There is one double and one twin accessible room, both with wider door entrances. The double is the larger of the two with a larger bathroom. Both bathrooms have accessible shower seats which are mounted on the wall under the shower, lots of handrails and everything in the bathroom is at a low height.

Within the hotel they offer a vibrating pillow and flashing alarm system for the deaf in the case of an emergency, if you notify the receptionists of any specific needs upon arrival they will also come and assist you to ensure your safety in an emergency.

Guide dogs are allowed into the building.

Restaurant and Café / Meeting Rooms

There is a restaurant and café area on the ground floor, both have plenty of tables for wheelchairs to fit comfortably underneath. The café is open to members of the public, there are often people having business meetings within the café, they offer table service and you can pay at your table by cash or card.

The restaurant is more for the hotel guests, the food is served as a ‘help yourself’ buffet, which would be difficult for somebody in a wheelchair, but the staff will bring the food over to your table if required.

There are also a number of meeting rooms that can be hired out for private business meetings or functions, these are all accessible for wheelchairs.

Toilet

There is a disabled toilet located between the reception area and the café, the facilities within the toilet are good, there were handrails for right and left-hand transfer and everything was within reach for a wheelchair user. They were also nice and clean.

Lift

There is a lift which takes you up to more hotel rooms, I was able to fit my wheelchair in and my PA was able to fit in too, but it was tight. All of the facilities however are on the first floor as well as a large number of hotel rooms so the lift isn’t a necessity for a wheelchair user staying in the hotel.

There are also two platform stairs lifts to get up and down the small sets of stairs which lead down from the café to the hotel rooms, meeting rooms and leisure club. These both worked efficiently and the staff are happy to help with operating them.

 

Accessibility Rating

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Brewhouse & Kitchen – Cheltenham

Brewhouse & Kitchen – Cheltenham

Brewhouse & Kitchen | 7th March 2018

Parking

The Brewhouse & Kitchen is located in Cheltenham Brewery quarter therefore there is no specific customer parking. There is an NCP car park just opposite the premises, they do offer disabled spaces however, they don’t offer discounted or free parking for blue badge holders. There is some on street pay and display just outside the brewery as well as double yellow lines to park on if you have a blue badge.

Accessibility

There are large, manual, double doors to enter the building with a flat entrance. The doors are quite heavy.

I visited on a week day at lunch time so it was fairly quiet and I found my own table to sit at, in the evening a staff member would show you to a table. Most of the venue is on the ground floor and is all accessible for a wheelchair apart from a small upstairs area with a few extra tables.

When walking into the bar/restaurant you are greeted with the smell of beer brewing. There was some quiet music playing in the background and it was nice and bright within the building. There are quite a few tables in the restaurant that are not suitable for a wheelchair, for example raised benches and barrels which have been converted into tables which add to the brewhouse effect. There are however, still plenty of tables that are suitable for a wheelchair and I made sure I was able to fit underneath several of them comfortably.

They do not offer braille or large print menus for the visually impaired and do not offer hearing loops for the deaf but the staff are willing to help read through the menu with you.

The restaurant is open plan and there aren’t any secluded booths but there a few quieter corners if you wanted to get away from the hustle and bustle.

The fire exit is up a few raised stairs so could cause difficulty for an electric wheelchair.

There is no lowered section to the bar so would be difficult for a wheelchair user to pay at the bar, however you are able to pay at the table by card or cash.

Customer Service

My PA went up to the bar to order our drinks, the gentleman serving was very polite, helpful and friendly and bought our drinks over to our table. He helped move the furniture, so I could fit my wheelchair under a table and also answered all of my extra questions for the assessment.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located on the righthand side of the bar. The toilet was nice and spacious inside with plenty of room for my wheelchair.

There were handrails to transfer and the sink, soap dispenser and hand dryer were all at a lowered height for wheelchair user.

There were some sanitary bins in the toilet and they were in the corner of the room and out of the way.

A RADAR key is required for the door

Accessibility Rating

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Tewkesbury Public Parking

Tewkesbury Public Parking

Tewkesbury Public Parking

Oldbury Road Car Park

Location: Station St, Tewkesbury GL20 5NJ

Date visited: 1st June 2018

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

Four disabled bays

________________________________________

Spring Gardens Car Park

Location: Oldbury Rd, Tewkesbury, GL20 5LZ

Date Visited: 1st June 2018

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

Six disabled bays

________________________________________

St Mary’s Lane Car Park

Location: St Mary’s Ln, Tewkesbury GL20 5RU

Date Visited: 1st June 2018

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

One disabled bay

________________________________________

Railsmeadow Car Park

Location: Howells Rd, Tewkesbury GL20 5PW

Date Visited: 1st June 2018

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

Three disabled bays

________________________________________

Vineyards Car Park

Location: Gander Lane, Tewkesbury GL20 5PG

Date Visited: 1st June 2018

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

Three disabled bays

________________________________________

Gloucester Road Car Park

Location: Gloucester Rd, Tewkesbury, GL20 5SW

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Coaches

Up to 4 hours – £3

Over 4 hours £6

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

One disabled bay

_______________________________________

Bishops Walk Car Park

Location: Oldbury Rd, Tewkesbury, GL20 5LQ

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 3 hours – £2

Over 3 hours – £4

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

Two disabled parking bays

___________________________________

Abbey Lawn Trust Car Park

Location: Gander Lane, Tewkesbury GL20 5PG

Date Visited: 1st June 2018

Charges apply 8am – 5.30pm

Up to 1 hour – £1

Up to 2 hours – £2

Up to 3 hours £3

Up to 4 hours £4

Over 4 hours – £6

Free parking for disabled blue badge holders

One disabled bay

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Côte Brasserie

Côte Brasserie

Côte Brasserie | 17th January 2018

Parking

The restaurant is located in Gloucester quays, therefore there is ample disabled parking in Gloucester Quays or Gloucester Docks car park.

Accessibility

There is a flat entrance with a wide manual door leading into the restaurant. There were plenty of tables I was able to fit my wheelchair underneath comfortably.

They don’t offer larger print or braille menus and the regular menus are very small print so no good for somebody with a visual impairment. The staff are very helpful and would read this out for you if requested.

The restaurant is open plan and there are no secluded booths, there was quiet music playing in the background.

The walkways through the restaurant were all wide enough to navigate my wheelchair through.

Customer Service

The service I received was excellent, the waiter held the door open for me upon arrival and gave me a choice of any table. The waitress that took our order was very helpful and the food was served quickly.

Toilets

The disabled toilet is located at the back of the building, the door is behind a curtain. The staff showed me to the toilet and held the curtain and door open for me.

The toilet was very spacious inside, the lighting was good and it was nice and clean.

The sink, toilet paper dispenser and hand dryer were all at a reasonable height for a wheelchair user.

Accessibility Rating

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Janes Pantry

Janes Pantry

Janes Pantry | 10th January 2018

Parking

Janes Pantry is located in the town centre therefore there is no customer parking. The nearest car park is Kings Walk which has plenty of disabled parking.

Accessibility

There was a wide manual door on the righthand side of the café, there were plenty of tables that were suitable to fit a wheelchair underneath however, the aisles between the tables were quite narrow. This made getting to the counter quite difficult as they don’t offer table service.

The seated area is all open and there are no secluded booths. All the menus are on a board so this is difficult for somebody who has a visual impairment.

Customer Service

The service received was average, my drink was served quickly however the staff could have been more accommodating for a wheelchair user.

Toilets

The disabled toilet is located at the back of the building, this isn’t that easy to get to due to the narrow aisles within the café. The turning point into the toilet through the door is also quite tight.

The facilities within the toilet are all fine there are handrails for a left and right-hand transfer and the sink and toilet paper dispenser were both at a reasonable height for a wheelchair user but the hand dryer was too high.

The toilets were nice and clean.

Accessibility Rating

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The Orchard Trust

The Orchard Trust

The Orchard Trust | 5th January 2018

The Orchard Trust are a registered charity based in the Forest of Dean, they have two supported living homes in Lydney and four residential homes located in Lydbrook, Coleford and Ruardeen Hill. There is also a day centre facility which is located in Lydbrook, just a short distance from the home. The day centre is open to the public as well as the service users during the hours of 09.00am-03.00pm They welcome and accommodate people from all walks of life, including all physical disabilities, the elderly as well as mental health issues or even people that just need a bit support. There is no charge to visit the smallholding and sensory garden but they also offer Activities, Creativity, Engagement (A.C.E) you can read the details here on the website as well as pricing.

Parking and Location

Orchard Trust can be tricky to find as a first-time visitor, click here to view directions, my top tip would be to look out for the concrete bus shelter opposite the turning and it’s pretty easy from there.

Once you reach the top of the hill there is a car park located on the righthand side, the small car park is unmarked and there are no designated disabled spots but the accessibility from the car park to the venue is fine. There is a newly paved even pathway leading from the car park to the reception area.

Accessibility 

The Orchard Trust reached out to me and asked me to visit the site, the purpose of my visit was to advise them on how they can improve accessibility issues they have as they are looking to make continuous improvements to the site. They are located on an uneven hillside which causes some accessibility issues.

Learning Centre

The main learning centre and reception point is in a two-story converted barn with no lift, the only access point to the second story for wheelchair users is across a raised ramp which you are required to go outside for, the turning point into the building is quite tight and a little tricky to manoeuvre. All the doors across the site are manual so a wheelchair user would require assistance from somebody who is able bodied. Despite some of the accessibility issues, I was still able to access all areas of the building.#

Kitchen

Within the learning centre is a kitchen with four separate colour coded areas, in each area there is an oven, a sink and basic kitchen appliances such as chopping boards and frying pans etc. In the pink kitchen there is a height adjustable worktop at the touch of a button. There is plenty of space to navigate around the kitchen in my wheelchair.

Activity Park

There is a newly built activity park which is designed for adults with disabilities as well as children, there are also activities for the able-bodied which provides a fun day out for all families. In the park there is a swing and merry-go-round designed for wheelchairs to mount. Along side it is a standard swing to all be enjoyed at the same time and the merry-go-round has seats to be sat on as well as up to 2 wheelchairs. There is also a in ground trampoline which will also hold a wheelchair.

Activity Park

There is a newly built activity park which is designed for adults with disabilities as well as children, there are also activities for the able-bodied which provides a fun day out for all families. In the park there is a swing and merry-go-round designed for wheelchairs to mount. Along side it is a standard swing to all be enjoyed at the same time and the merry-go-round has seats to be sat on as well as up to 2 wheelchairs. There is also a in ground trampoline which will also hold a wheelchair.

Smallholding

There is a lovely smallholding which is fully accessible for wheelchair users. Here you’ll find some farm animals including Milly the pig, sheep, pygmy goats (two of which are pregnant!), chickens and ducks which you are able to pet and feed. The goats in particular are very fun and friendly!

There is a newly paved pathway which leads around the smallholding, it is wide enough for two wheelchairs to pass by each other. There are also stopping points with benches dotted along the pathway, so people can stop for a rest if needed.

At the far end of the walkway there is a sheltered wooden outdoor classroom, in here is a long bench purposely built to fit a wheelchair underneath. It’s also nice and quiet in here with a nice view and perfect for a picnic.

Sensory Garden

Even though I visited the sensory garden on a cold winter day I was still able to appreciate the surroundings, I can imagine it would be twice as lovely in the summer.

I was able to navigate around all the garden in my wheelchair, however some of the areas I wasn’t able to reach from my wheelchair due to them being too far away from the pathway.

There was however still plenty of areas I could enjoy including a xylophone, plants I could touch, feel and smell and a small water feature.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located round the back of the building on the ground floor in the learning centre. There is quite a tight turning point into the toilet which is hard to manoeuvre as a wheelchair user.

I was unable to transfer from my wheelchair to the toilet due to not having an appropriate hand rail. There are manual adjustable hand rails for left and right-hand transfer, however for me to be able to transfer from my wheelchair I need a static handrail attached to the wall that doesn’t move for safety purposes. I advised Phill about this and he said he would look to install a new handrail as soon as possible.

I was unable to turn the tap on by myself as it was too stiff, again Phill is aware of this and considering other options. The toilet paper and soap dispenser are also a little too high for me in my wheelchair.

There is an overhead hoist and an adjustable bed however I didn’t use these facilities, so I can’t comment any further.

There is enough room in the toilet for a wheelchair to turn around safely.

Note there is another toilet in the Leisure Centre which I was able to use.

Leisure Centre

There was a flat entrance into the leisure centre, it was accessible through a manual double door. There was also an accessible fire exit at the back of the building via a ramp.

There is an onsite fully equipped pool room, jacuzzi and floor level trampoline. I didn’t use any of these facilities however, at first glance they all looked very good. There was somebody in the swim gym, so I couldn’t look at this area, but I did view the rebound centre which has a ground level trampoline with a hoist to assist with transfer. There was plenty of soft mats around the trampoline to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

There is a disabled toilet in the leisure centre, access to the toilet is not ideal for a wheelchair user as you are required to drive the wheelchair over the mats for the trampoline and there is a danger of driving over the trampoline by mistake causing damage or injury.

Customer Service

Project manager Phill Hucks and George gave us the tour of the venue, they were both very polite and friendly and took all my comments on board with a view to take action. It is obvious that they both have a passion to give their service users the best experience possible.

Accessibility Rating

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Coffee Lab

Coffee Lab

Coffee Lab | 15th December 2017

Parking

The Coffee Lab is located in Gloucester Docks, there are plenty of disabled parking spaces either in the Gloucester Docks car park or the Gloucester Quays car park. These are both a short distance to walk  to the restaurant.

Accessibility

The Coffee Lab café is located within the restaurant the Grillshed, please read the full review here to read about accessibility and toilets within Coffee Lab/Grill Shed.

You can also order drinks to takeaway.

Customer Service

I was served by the manager Jack who was very welcoming and friendly our drinks were served quickly and efficiently.

Accessibility Rating

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Grill Shed

Grill Shed

Grill Shed | 5th April 2017

Parking

The Grill Shed is located in Gloucester Docks, there are plenty of disabled parking spaces either in the Gloucester Docks car park or the Gloucester Quays car park. These are both a short distance to walk  to the restaurant.

Restaurant

There is a large accessible entrance leading into the venue.

The staff members are all very friendly, well-mannered and helpful. Jody took the time out of his day to answers our questions.

They currently don’t offer a larger print menu or braille menu for the visually impaired however, these have been ordered and are coming soon.

They do however offer a gluten free menu, a blender if you require your food to be liquidised and a baby bottle warming facility.

The seating plan is open, with plenty of booths and quiet corners. There is quiet music playing in the background.

The restaurant lighting is nice and bright.

They allow guide dogs in to the building.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet located at the back of the building. There is a ramp leading up to the toilet, this will take you down a corridor. The lighting is quite dim down the corridor.

The toilet is wheelchair accessible and is just large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in safely. There is enough room for a PA or family member to assist a wheelchair user.

The toilet has handrails for both transfer sides.

The sink and toilet paper dispenser are accessible for wheelchair users. However, the hand dryer is slightly too high for a wheelchair user. The lighting is nice and bright, the toilets are clean.

Accessibility Rating

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Bella Italia

Bella Italia | 21st March 2017 Parking There is lots of disabled parking in Gloucester Quays car park you can park here for free for 4 hours with a disabled badge. Accessibility There is a large accessible double door leading into the venue. The restaurant...

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Nature in Art

Nature in Art | 7th April 2017 Parking There is disabled parking located at the front of the building for three cars. Accessibility There is a ramp leading into the front of the building making it easy for wheelchair users. You enter straight into the gift...

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Shopmobility – Gloucester

Shopmobility – Gloucester

Shopmobility | 5th December 2017

The Shopmobility office which is located on Hampden Way just off Eastgate Street. The surrounding areas, pavements etc leading to the office were okay but a little uneven.

I originally emailed Shopmobility on an email address that I found on the Gloucestershire Gov website to enquire about their services and to get an application form to which I had no response. I went down to the office instead, there is a ramp which leads into the office which was perfectly suitable for my wheelchair. The office however was quite small and not very easy for me to navigate my wheelchair around.

The equipment is kept under a shelter outside during the day, they have mobility scooters, powered wheelchairs and manual wheelchairs available to hire. It is the responsibility of the customer and/or carer to transfer themselves into the appropriate equipment.

The shop assistant advised me that there was a transfer banana board available. However, when I asked to view this they couldn’t find it in the store room. There was also a side transfer ramp available.

Personally as a permanent wheelchair user I wouldn’t feel comfortable transferring and using the Shopmobility equipment but I would recommend this service for the elderly and less mobile to assist them with getting around.

 

Accessibility Rating

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Other Reviews

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Bella Italia

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Ibis Hotel

Ibis Hotel

Ibis | 28th November 2017

Parking

There are six disabled parking spaces located right at the front of the building with easy access into the hotel.

Customer Service

Shanique was very helpful and happy to show me around one of the disabled rooms. The hotel staff had to find a clean room for me to take a look at and this was no bother for them.

Accessibility

There is a flat entrance with a large automatic door into the reception area. The reception point was quite high with no low access point but the staff came round to speak with us.

Most of the rooms in the hotel are accessible due to the lift and they’re all quite spacious but there are seven specific disabled rooms with the large wet room and handrails for assistance with transfers, they also have a deaf guard facility. The room that I viewed was on the third floor, this was easy to get to in the lift.

The wet room and the bedroom are both very big and easy to navigate around. The bed was low down and not too high to make it easy to transfer from a wheelchair.

They also offer a vibrating pillow for the deaf in case of emergency.

Service dogs are allowed in the hotel.

Restaurant/Café

There was a café area on the ground floor near to the reception which was fully accessible. The restaurant is open from 6am until 10pm and the bar is open until midnight.

Lift

All floors can be accessed via the lift, the lift was large enough for the hotel assistant, my PA and I to all use at the same time. However, it was too small for me to turn the wheelchair around in. The lift buttons were all easy to reach for a wheelchair user

Accessibility Rating

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Other Reviews

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Bella Italia

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Christmas Market at Gloucester Quays

Christmas Market at Gloucester Quays

16th November 2017 – 24th December 2017

I visited the Christmas market at Gloucester Quays where there are lots of nice stalls selling Christmas items and food. It is a great atmosphere and I would recommend a visit. There is also an ice rink next to the market, read about it here!

Parking

There are plenty of disabled parking spaces located in the Quays car park where you can park for free for up to four hours with a blue badge. It is about a five minute journey in a wheelchair from the car park down to the ice rink. Read Gloucester Quays parking review here

Accessibility

The accessibility around the market was good and I was able to access all areas in my wheelchair. All of the stalls were accessible and I was able to view the items on sale. Some of them were quite high but the stall assistants were happy to come round and help if required.

There are a few ramps around the market to help you get around and leading up to the two bar areas.

Toilets

There are some temporary portaloos with a disabled toilet however, the facilities in the toilet weren’t great and it was very small. There are also the toilets inside the Gloucester Quays shopping centre which have excellent disabled facilities. Read my full review here

Accessibility Rating

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Other Reviews

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Bella Italia

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Ice Rink at Gloucester Quays

Ice Rink at Gloucester Quays

Ice Rink | 15th November 2017

I was lucky enough to be invited to the VIP launch event for Gloucester Quays festive ice rink.

The temporary ice rink is located in the docks between 16th November-2nd January, there is also a Victorian and enchanted German market running between 16th November and 24th December.

This is a great activity for families and they are also very accommodating for people with disabilities.

Parking

There are plenty of disabled parking spaces located in the Quays car park where you can park for free for up to four hours with a blue badge. It is about a five minute journey in a wheelchair from the car park down to the ice rink.

Accessibility

My experience on the ice rink was great as a wheelchair user, you are able to use a manual wheelchair on the ice but electric wheelchairs are not permitted. If you don’t have a manual wheelchair you can hire one free of charge from Gloucester Quays.

The ice rink is a decent size and is quite safe to skate around on in a wheelchair. If you are not a confident skater they can offer supportive shoes which can be worn over the top of your own shoes instead of skates.

There is a ramp leading up to the rink entrance with easy access to the ice and there is also a spacious fitting room where you can swap your shoes for skates. There is a small step getting onto the ice this is easy to navigate with a manual wheelchair.

Customer Service

I was invited by Hazel to attend the launch night she was very friendly and helpful and answered all of my questions. Another staff member kindly pushed me around on the ice for a little while.

Toilets

There are some temporary portaloos with a disabled toilet however, the facilities in the toilet weren’t great and it was very small. There are also the toilets inside the Gloucester Quays shopping centre which have excellent disabled facilities. Read my full review here

Accessibility Rating

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Other Reviews

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So Thai

So Thai

So Thai | 21st November 2017

Parking

So Thai is located on Longsmith street just outside Gloucester city centre. The closest car park is Ladybellgate street which is a two-minute walk from the restaurant.

Accessibility

Access to the restaurant isn’t very good, there is a sharp lip in the doorway which I couldn’t get my wheelchair over without assistance from my PA and two members of staff.

The tables in the restaurant were quite tight and weren’t easy for me to get my wheelchair underneath. This made it difficult when eating my meal.

There is another seating area downstairs which is inaccessible for a wheelchair user.

Customer Service

Although the accessibility wasn’t good the staff were all willing to help and were cooperative to try and make my experience an enjoyable one. They helped lift my wheelchair into the building and brought the card machine over to my table to pay so that I was able to do this myself.

Toilets

The toilets are all downstairs so no good for a wheelchair user or somebody who is able bodied. There is also no disabled toilet.

Accessibility Rating

Other Reviews

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Bella Italia

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Hubble Bubble

Hubble Bubble

Hubble Bubble | 15th November 2017

Parking

The café is located on Westgate street therefore there is no customer parking but there are plenty of public car parks around the city centre. I parked in the Ladybellgate street car park which is about a five minute journey in a wheelchair.

Accessibility

There is a flat entrance leading into the building with a wide accessible door. The café area was quite cramped and it was hard for me to find a suitable table for my wheelchair. They don’t operate by table service and you are required to order at the counter which wasn’t easy to get to if you are a wheelchair user.

Customer Service

The staff were friendly and polite but perhaps could have offered more help to assist someone in a wheelchair.

Toilets

There is no disabled toilet within the building.

Accessibility Rating

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Other Reviews

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Gloucester Prison

Gloucester Prison

Gloucester Prison | 3rd November 2017

Jailhouse tours organise the tour of Gloucester prison. The tours are conducted by ex-prison officers who share their interesting stories from when they worked at the prison. I found it very interesting learning all about the history of the prison and would definitely recommend a tour. They have development plans to turn this into flats in April 2018 so get booked if quick while you have the chance. Here is an artist impression of what they think the flats will look like.

Parking

There is no customer parking however there is a public car park on Ladybellegate street which is a five minute walk from the venue.

Accessibility

There is a ramp leading to the venue with double doors and there is a small reception point before entering the prison.
There are a few restricted areas due to stairs and the age of the building which I have highlighted in green on the map, I was able to access the first floor in B wing but the rest was inaccessible due to the stairs.

However, I was able to view most of the tour in my wheelchair. My guide advised me that we had to take a different route due to my wheelchair so before booking if you are in a wheelchair, advise a member of staff so they can accommodate for you.

There were quite a few tight corners and doorways, I was able to get around in my wheelchair but if you are in a wider wheelchair this may be an issue.

I was able to get a good insight into what life may have been like as a prisoner as I was able to view inside some of the cells and most areas to the prison.

Customer Service

When I emailed to enquire, Paul responded very quickly and was happy for me to assess the venue. Lucy gave me the tour of the prison on the day she was very informative polite and friendly and answered all of my questions.

Toilet

There was a disabled toilet but it was very old and there was no handrails so personally wouldn’t recommend it for a wheelchair user. The soap and hand dryer were also too high for a wheelchair user.

Accessibility Rating

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Other Reviews

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Spookday

Spookday

Spookday | 27th October 2017

This is a Halloween event for kids which is held every year at Over Farm Market. They also have a night time attraction for adults however this is not accessible for wheelchairs.

Spookday is a fun day out for kids and families however the accessibility was limited

Parking

There were no designated disabled parking spaces, if you speak to the car park attendants know on arrival they will assign you a spot close to the entrance.

Accessibility

The walk down from the car park wasn’t very good for a wheelchair user, it was uneven and muddy. This was to be expected considering the location is in a field. The uneven terrain continued around the rest of the attraction.
A lot of the activities were interactive and not really suitable for someone in a wheelchair, but there were some shows going on throughout the day which were more suitable and were good fun for kids.

Toilet

There was a disabled portaloo, but there was no hand rail and I would not have taken the risk to transfer using these facilities.

Accessibility Rating

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Prinknash Bird & Deer Park

Prinknash Bird & Deer Park

Prinknash | 25th October 2017

I visited Prinknash Bird and Deer park following an article I read online regarding an incident with an autistic gentleman. Melanie Meigh announced she was going to hike carer tickets up from £3 to the full ticket price. Please take a look at the article in the link below where you will see the attitude towards the disabled community is not a pleasant one.. Read the article here

Parking

There are two disabled parking spaces in the main car park, then there is a five minute journey (as a wheelchair user) down to the visitor centre. However this is down a steep road with no foot path (there is a stepped foot path).

Once I had travelled down to the visitor centre in my wheelchair I was faced with a steep gravel pathway. My wheelchair skidded on the gravel which could have potentially been dangerous.

As I was leaving, the owner advised me that I could park my car outside the visitor centre to avoid walking up the steep roadside slope however, the gravel pathway was unavoidable.

Accessibility

The park owner advised me of the following information:

“Due to the park being over 50 years old and due to the location, accessibility is an issue and wheelchair users are unable to access the park itself. There are Tree Preservation Orders on the trees limiting the amount of concrete etc that can be laid down as it would stop water getting to the roots.

A grant was requested to put a ramp inside the park but it was considered to be too large and would also damage the natural outstanding beauty, so there are lots of steps leading down to the park itself.”

However, wheelchair users can access the visitor centre which has a balcony where you can view some of the animals but the view is pretty poor for a wheelchair user as the balcony is too high. There is also a small café at the visitor centre where they serve teas, coffees and confectionary.

Accessibility Rating

Due to the fact I was unable to view any of the animals or park I can only give this a no star rating

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Unfortunately, I was unable to get onto the other balcony as there was a step, this could be easily avoided by putting a small soft edged lip over the door frame.

There is a £3 charge for a carer to assist a disabled visitor, which I haven’t come across when visiting any other attraction.

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet with enough room for someone to assist a wheelchair user. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser were all within reach for a wheelchair user. The toilet was nice and clean and safe to use.

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Sahara Lounge

Sahara Lounge

Sahara Lounge | 24th October 2017

Parking and accessibility

There is no specific customer parking but there is a public car park just off Wellington Street which has disabled spaces. This car park is located directly behind the restaurant.

There is a flat entrance at the front of the building which leads into the restaurant but then there is a flight of stairs leading down to the bar. If you speak to a member of staff they will open the rear entrance for you which has a ramp leading into the building. You will need to go down the side alley to access this.

Toilet

There is a disabled toilet which is located to the left of the bar. There was enough room for my PA to assist but it was tight.

The toilet has handrails for both transfer sides. The sink and hand dryer were accessible for a wheelchair user. There was no toilet paper dispenser. The lock on the door also wasn’t very easy to use.

Restaurant

The restaurant is wheelchair accessible with lots of wide open space and tables which I could fit my wheelchair under.

They’re open all day offering breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The customer service I received was good, the staff were helpful and friendly.

The menu was small print and they didn’t offer anything in large print.

 

Accessibility Rating

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Caffé Nero

Caffé Nero

18th October 2017

Parking and accessibility

Caffé Nero is located in Gloucester Docks just outside The Quays shopping centre.

There is good access to the building with a flat entrance and double doors leading into the venue.

There are lots of disabled parking spaces located in The Quays car park, where you can park for free for up to four hours with a blue badge. Take the parking ticket and blue badge with you to the Customer Service desk in the mall where you will be given an exit ticket.

Cafe

The venue was spacious and there were plenty of tables I could fit my wheelchair underneath but there were no secluded booths or quieter areas.

The counter was high and it was difficult to order my own drink or pay for it due to being in a wheelchair.

The staff were polite and friendly.

Toilets

There is one disabled toilet which is located at the back of building.

The toilet was very tight for space  – there wasn’t a lot of room for my PA to assist.

The toilet paper dispenser was also a little high but the handrails, sink and soap dispenser were all at a reasonable height for a wheelchair user.

The lock on the toilet door was insecure, when I bumped against the door in my wheelchair due to the lack of space in the toilet, this caused the lock to open accidently which wasn’t very private.

Accessibility Rating

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Wetherspoons in the Docks

Wetherspoons in the Docks

18th October 2017

Parking and accessibility

The Lord High Constable of England is located in Gloucester Docks on the waterside.

There is good accessibility to the building with a flat entrance and double doors leading into the venue.

There are lots of disabled parking spaces located in The Quays car park, where you can park for free for up to four hours with a blue badge. Take the parking ticket and the blue badge with you to customer service desk in the mall where you will be given an exit ticket.

Wetherspoons don’t operate via table service you are to place your order at the bar on arrival and then find your own table. The customer service I received at the bar was good, the staff were polite and friendly and the service was reasonably quick.

Restaurant

The venue is very spacious and there are plenty of seating areas suitable for wheelchairs. There are secluded booths if you need to get away from the noise.

Wetherspoons also have a service which allows you to download an app on your phone and you can order food this way rather than queuing at the bar. This is very useful for the disabled, deaf and non-verbal.

Toilets

There is one disabled toilet which is located close to the entrance. This requires a RADAR key. The toilet was adequate with enough room for a family member or PA to assist.

The toilet has handrails for both transfer sides. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser were all accessible for a wheelchair user.

Accessibility Rating

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Trapped Escape Rooms

Trapped Escape Rooms

4th October 2017

Escape Rooms is a real-life room escape game which requires players to work together to solve a series of riddles while locked in a themed room. There are three rooms – The Haunted Hotel, The Hangover and Prison Break of which you have 1 hour to escape.

I didn’t take part in the activities however, I could tell from the rooms that this would be a great activity to do with some friends or family.

I was unable to take any photos of the inside of the rooms as it would give away the secrets of the game!

Accessibility

There are steps to the front entrance making this inaccessible, however there is a flat entrance round the back with a small step which I was able to get my wheelchair through.

I was able to get my 600mm electric wheelchair around all three rooms although the entrances were very tight, this wouldn’t be suitable if you had a wide wheelchair. If you have a manual wheelchair I would recommend this over an electric one as this would be easier to navigate the tight entrances.

There are dim lights and flashing lights throughout the rooms therefore this would not be suitable for anybody who is sensitive to these types of things.

Customer Service

Nick was very helpful from start to finish. He responded to my e-mails very quickly and was keen for me to come and visit. He took the time to show me around the premises when the building had no bookings during the day.

Toilets

There is a spacious disabled toilet with enough room for a family member or PA to assist a wheelchair user. The sink, hand dryer and soap dispenser are all accessible for a wheelchair user. The emergency cord had been tied up out of reach, I advised Nick that this was unsafe and he assured me that he would make sure this was within reach at all times. The toilet was nice and clean.

Parking

There is no onsite parking however, there is a public car park just off Wellington street. There are also double yellow lines outside with a drop kerb which are suitable for a blue badge holder.

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Accessibility Rating

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Gloucester Park

Gloucester Park

15th September 2017

Accessibility

When arriving at Gloucester Park there is disabled parking located on Park Road which is a two minute walk from the park entrance. There is pay and display roadside parking and also double yellow lines which would have been suitable for my blue badge, however; there were no dropped kerbs so that I could safely access the pathway. St Michaels car park is also a 10 minute journey in a wheelchair however, there are uneven broken pathways which aren’t ideal for a wheelchair

There were a few entrances into the park which were even and easily accessible. The pathways around the park were fairly smooth for my wheelchair, there were a few gravelled areas but I was able to access most of the park.

There are lots of nice areas within the park including a play park for children, grassy picnic areas, monuments, flowerbeds, a bird enclosure, a ping pong table (own equipment required) and rugby posts. There is a small café within the grounds however, this wasn’t open when I visited the park and I wasn’t able to find out the opening times.

 

Toilets

There is a disabled toilet which requires a RADAR key. This is located next to the bird aviary. There is no sign outside the toilet to indicate that there is a disabled toilet and I missed it at first. I have since met with David Pritchett, the Open Spaces Strategy Officer for Gloucester Park. He advised me about the disabled toilet and informed me that they will have clearer signage in future.

The toilet was large enough for someone to assist a wheelchair user and all facilities including sink, hand dryer and toilet roll dispenser were at an appropriate height. The toilets were clean and hygienic.

David also advised me that he will also look into the parking issues within the surrounding area and speak to the relevant people to see if we can get this issue resolved by adding some disabled parking spaces and also dropped kerbs. Hopefully the Council and Gloucestershire Highways will look into these issues ASAP. I will update the site with any changes in the future.

Accessibility Rating

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The Priory Harvester At St Oswalds Retail Park

The Priory Harvester At St Oswalds Retail Park

22nd August 2017

Parking and access

There are three disabled parking spaces close to the entrance of the building. There is a flat entrance leading in with a large double door.

There are also some outside benches suitable for a wheelchair user if you wanted to sit outside for a drink on a hot summer’s day.

I received good customer service throughout my visit. I was shown quickly to my table where they had already removed a chair so I could fit my wheelchair underneath straight away. My waiter Chris was very friendly and helpful and answered all of my questions and requirements.

They had taken the time to choose my table which was close to everything I needed – for example toilets, salad bar and drinks refill station.

Toilets

There is one disabled toilet at the back of the building which requires a RADAR key. There is enough room within the toilet for a wheelchair to turn around safely. There is also enough room for a family member or PA to assist the wheelchair user.

The toilet has handrails for both transfer sides, the sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for a wheelchair user.

The toilets are nice and clean and safe to use and the lighting is nice and bright.

Restaurant

The restaurant serves breakfast from 9.00am to11.30am. The varied menu starts at 11.30am and ends at 10.00pm.

The restaurant has an open plan seating area but there are also quiet booths. The menus were nice and clear but they do not offer braille or large print menus.They are looking into it and I will update with any changes.

If a customer requires their food to be liquidised they will do this for you, however, you need to bring in your own liquidiser. They will also let you bring in your own food if you require it to be liquidised. They are happy to host groups of less able customers.

They allow guide dogs into the building and there was also some quiet music playing in the background.

Accessibility Rating

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Stagecoach

Stagecoach

16th August 2017

I was very impressed with the customer service provided by Peter Allen, the training coordinator at Stagecoach. So firstly, a big thanks to him and also Roger who assisted.

Peter talked me through the three day training programme for staff. Day One is focused on Customer Care and Service. Day Two is specifically focused on Disability and Social Inclusion. Day Three is focused on dealing with any difficult situations the drivers may encounter. I think that all of these factors show that Stagecoach really care about their customers and in particular helping the disabled community.

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They take into consideration all aspects of disability whether this be physical or behavioural. Drivers ensure there is no discrimination and are taught how to deal with all situation. This encourages all members of the community to feel safe and comfortable on Stagecoach buses.

There is an easy-to-find contact address on the website: https://www.stagecoachbus.com/regional-help-and-contact/west  – this can be changed to any area code, I am pleased to say there is a specific disability contact line and email address which is:

Telephone: 01452 418630 – Email: west.disabilityhelpdesk@stagecoachbus.com

If you call this helpline Stagecoach will arrange an out of service bus for a disabled user to practice getting on and off the bus.This way when using a scheduled bus the customer will feel prepared and won’t feel intimidated or uncomfortable. For wheelchair or mobility scooter users or the less mobile the driver will get off the bus and assist with the ramp and also the suspension will be lowered to the curb. All wheelchair and mobility scooter users are able to use the buses free of charge with a bus pass.

Getting my 600mm wheelchair on and off the bus was fairly easy, it was slightly tight to the door of the bus but apart from that there was plenty of space. The driver made sure I was in a safe position before driving off.

Stagecoach have a policy that if a wheelchair/mobility scooter is not able to fit within the designated area due to another customer already using the space, they will call a taxi service free of charge and wait with them until the taxi arrives. The exception to this may be if it is a regular ten or twenty minute service the driver may ask if the wheelchair user doesn’t mind waiting until the next bus. However, they will never leave a wheelchair user at the side of the road without organising some type of transport.

Stagecoach were kind enough to give us their presentation slides relating to disability customers that they present in their training programmes.

Gloucester bus station is currently under major reconstruction, however the accessibility around the station is suitable. There is plenty of space and raised areas on and off the platforms

Accessibility Rating

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Gloucester Train Station

Gloucester Train Station

2nd August 2017

My overall experience of travelling in a wheelchair from Gloucester Train Station was good. The Station Master, Mike, was helpful from start to finish and advised me on how I could contact the Assisted Travel helpline. The train station and the trains are kept clean, tidy and safe to ensure a pleasant journey.

Accessibility

I called the Assisted Travel helpline a few days ahead of my journey to inform them of my requirements.

Once I got to the train station I informed the station master of my arrival. He advised me which platform my train was departing from. As the train was arriving, the station guard approached to assist me. Then he laid out the ramp and helped me on the train safely. There was a designated area for wheelchair users on the train to sit comfortably. I received the same good service when exiting the train at the other end.

There are four disabled parking spaces at the train station. However, the parking and entrance leading up to the station are the biggest downfall. The disabled parking is located on the far side of the car park and you have to cross the busy and uneven car park with no walkway.

There are two large, wide, automatic doors leading into the train station with a flat entrance. There was an easy access, low reception point where I was able to purchase my train ticket easily. There was a large electronic ticketed gate for an electric or manual wheelchair to fit through.

There was a lift to all platforms, it was large enough for my PA and me. It was also large enough for me to turn around safely in my wheelchair. The buttons for the lift are all at a height that I could reach from my wheelchair. There was a speaker inside and outside the lift to notify you of the doors opening and closing and the lift going up or down. Exiting the lift leads you to a wide footbridge which leads you over the train lines, safely to the other platforms.

All walkways are wide and there are also easy access, indoor waiting rooms.

With the loud noise of passing trains this may not be suitable for people that don’t like loud noises.

Toilets

There were two disabled toilets, one located in the male toilets and one in the female. The facilities in both were good. However, this was not ideal as my female PA would have to enter the male toilets to assist me.

There are handrails for both transfer sides. The sink and soap dispenser are both accessible for a wheelchair user but the hand dryer was too high.

There was a workable lock on the door therefore this doesn’t require a RADAR key. There was good lighting and they were clean and safe to use.

Café

There was a small café serving hot, cold drinks and sandwiches. This was located just inside the entrance to the Train Station. There were two accessible double doors and there were small round tables suitable for a wheelchair user.

There were no menus as such therefore no larger print or braille menus.

Accessibility Rating

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Cattle Country

Cattle Country

30th June 2017

Cattle country is a great day out for families. There is lots to do for young children of all ages. There are limitations for the disabled but the park can still be enjoyed. All the staff members were very friendly, helpful and well mannered. Stuart the manager took the time out of his day to find us and answer any of our questions. An on-site vet ensurse the animals are well looked after and the park is kept clean and tidy. There are no smoking areas and first aid kits located around the park to ensure a pleasant and safe trip. Overall I would recommend this as a fun day out!

Accessibility

There are designated disabled parking spaces. However these were not very clearly displayed. There was an accessible double door with a ramp leading into the venue. The reception point was accessible but it was quite high.

There were lots of accessible areas for wheelchair users although there were some restricted areas.

There was a farmyard trail that can be accessed by wheelchair users. On the farmyard there were lots of animals including pigs that you could feed. There was also an area where you could wash your hands after feeding the pigs which was also accessible.

There was an indoor animal area where you could get close and personal with the animals. This was accessible for wheelchair users including the hand wash stations.

There was also an accessible grassy area with picnic benches.

There are lots of areas around the park which are great fun for kids but are inaccessible for wheelchair users. These include a huge pillow for bouncing on, mini golf, a splash pool, climbing frames, a boating lake and two soft-play areas but it is possible to watch family and friends from a short distance away.

Toilets

The main downfall of the park was that there was only one disabled toilet. Considering the size of the park this is not ideal as there was another block of public toilets located at the bottom of the park where a second accessible loo could have been installed. The disabled toilet is located at the top of park, it has handrails for both side transfers. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for wheelchair users.

It is large enough for a wheelchair to turn around in safely and there is enough room for a family member or PA to assist a wheelchair user. The toilet doesn’t require a RADAR key and unfortunately there wasn’t a workable lock on the door so it’s open to all and not very private! The lighting was poor inside the toilet when the door was shut.

Café

There is an onsite café with a ramp leading up to the double doors. The only menu was a chalk board. This wasn’t suitable for visitors who are visually impaired.

The café was light, spacious and open plan, but there were no booths. This would unsuitable for visitors sensitive to loud noises.

The food was satisfactory and served quickly and there were small round tables inside and outside that were suitable for wheelchair users.

Accessibility Rating

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Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut

21st June I visited Pizza Hut, Eastern Avenue.

Parking

There are two disabled parking spaces located at the front of the building.

There is a flat entrance leading into the venue with a large accessible, double door.

All the staff members were very helpful, friendly and well mannered. Our waitress was fantastic from start to finish and answered any of our questions.

Toilets

There are disabled toilets located at the back of the building.

They are accessible for wheelchair user and there is enough room for a wheelchair to turn around safely.There is enough room for a family member or PA to assist a wheelchair user.

The toilet has handrails for both transfer sides. The sink, hand dryer and toilet paper dispenser are all accessible for wheelchair users.

The toilet doesn’t require a RADAR key.

The lighting is nice and bright, the toilets are nice and clean and safe to use.

Restaurant

The restaurant is accessible for wheelchair users. The restaurant has an open plan seating area and lots of accessible tables.

There is a raised area of steps which is inaccessible by wheelchair users, however there is still plenty of easy access.

There are lots of booths and quiet corners to get away from the hustle and bustle.

The restaurant offer a larger print menu and braille menu for the visually impaired but they don’t offer a hearing loop for the deaf.

The menus are nice and light.

There is a moderate level of background music. This will get louder if the restaurant is full.

They allow all service dogs into the building.

 

Accessibility Rating

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Jet Age Museum

Jet Age Museum

17th June 2017

There are two disabled parking spaces located at the front of the building.

There is a flat entrance leading into the venue with large accessible double doors.

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Once inside, you go through a set of accessible double doors to enter the museum.

Attraction

Once inside there is a large open space which is all completely accessible.

There are lots of planes and little bits of information that you can get up close and personal with. I could drive my wheelchair right up to any of these displays with no trouble.

Outside there are some planes that are open for the public to go in and sit in. However these are inaccessible for wheelchair users due to the gravelled ground leading up to the planes. 

There is a possibility of them looking into getting a third seat at the back one of the Harrier planes. Then this will make the plane accessible for wheelchair users. Watch this space for an update!

Toilets

There are disabled toilets located to the right as you enter the building.

These are accessible for wheelchair users. There isn’t quite enough room for a wheelchair to turn around safely. There is room for a family member or PA to assist a wheelchair user.

There are handrails for both transfer sides. The sink and toilet paper dispenser are both accessible for a wheelchair user. The hand dryer is a little too high for a wheelchair user.

The toilet doesn’t require a RADAR key.

The lighting in the toilet nice and bright. The toilets are nice and clean and safe to use.

Café

There is a café to the left as you enter the building. This is accessible for wheelchair users.

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There are lots of tables that you can fit a wheelchair underneath.

Accessibility Rating

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The Comfy Pew

The Comfy Pew

13th June 2017

There is disabled parking located at Westgate Street Car and Coach Park.

There is a cobbled street leading up to the venue. This is quite uncomfortable for anyone in an electric wheelchair but navigable.

There is a flat entrance leading into the venue. This has a very narrow door, but it is accessible.

 

Inside there are tables and booths however, I couldn’t fit my wheelchair underneath any of them.

There are tables located outside which are a bit more accessible.

Unfortunately there are no disabled toilets located in the building.

Accessibility Rating

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The Dick Whittington

The Dick Whittington

9th June 2017

There is disabled parking located in the Westgate Street Car and Coach Park.

The pub actually has no accessible entrance. They do have portable ramps to use on the front entrance steps but these are not suitable for a power wheelchair.

We did attempt to use them to get into the building but the ramp wouldn’t take the weight of my wheelchair, which is quite compact.

The staff members were all very kind, helpful and friendly.

Also unfortunately there are no disabled toilets within the building.

To be able to ea,t we sat in the pub’s beer garden. There are a few tables outside that are wheelchair accessible. You do have to order your food at the bar. Therefore you will need someone who is able bodied to order your food for you.

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Accessibility Rating