School donates equipment to enable children with limited mobility to have a better swimming experience at Lords Meadow Leisure Centre
Discussions between Lords Meadow Leisure Centre and Landscore Primary School, Crediton, together with a physiotherapist and occupational therapist, have resulted in improved accessibility in the and swimming pools and changing area at Lords Meadow for customers with special needs.
The need was highlighted for specialist equipment that would enable those with limited mobility to be able to shower and change comfortably and safely with the assistance of their carer(s). What the leisure centre really needed was an adjustable power-assisted changing bed to help people of all ages who need to shower or change in a lying down position, and also provided easier movement into a wheelchair to then access the swimming pool by the existing hoist and chair system.
Following discussions, such a changing bed was very kindly donated by Landscore School and has now been installed into one of the existing disabled changing rooms in the swimming pool changing area. The room has a private toilet, shower and basin and is fitted with an alarm system to call for assistance when necessary.
Gary Read, head teacher at Landscore, said: “At Landscore we have come a long way in ensuring high-quality provision for children with physical difficulties. With the completion of our new physiotherapy room, we were happy to pass on a surplus changing bed to Lords Meadow Leisure Centre to help to improve accessibility in their changing area. We provided the bed and Mid-Devon District Council provided the personnel to move and install it – a good example of partnership working for the benefit of the community.”
After the installation of the changing bed, the Occupational Therapist visited the centre to ensure that the staff were trained properly in its operation. Lee Chester, centre manager, said: “I would like to thank Gary Read for the donation of this equipment and to everyone who played a part in bringing about this addition to the facilities available at the centre.
“I am delighted that we have been able to go one step further than merely adhering to the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act, by improving the experience of the customers who have difficulties with mobility who use the centre.”
The changing bed is available for any those who require assistance from a carer to access the leisure centre facilities and centre staff have been trained to assist users in its operation.