Wheelchair Swing Installed At Picket Twenty!
New accessible equipment in the form of a wheelchair swing has been installed on the Picket Twenty development in Andover, enabling disabled children to play alongside their peers.
The project was the result of a collaboration between local residents, housebuilder Persimmon Homes and Test ValleyBorough Council, inspired by four-year-old Ava Coole, whose mother initiated the idea, the Andover Advertiser reports.
Leanne Coole took to Facebook and the Picket Twenty community group to post a message and ask if local residents would help her raise funds for a swing that wheelchair users could enjoy.
She explained: “During lockdown, my daughter Ava missed going to the park and it was hard explaining to a four-year-old why she couldn’t use the playground.
“She was completely thrilled when our local play area reopened and it suddenly struck me that there are lots of children who every day must look at playgrounds and not be able to use them because they are not accessible. It made me really sad to think that many children can’t do something so simple and fun that the rest of us take for granted.”
Inclusive playgrounds are those that provide children, parents, carers and people of all abilities with inclusive access and the ability to move throughout the space safely and independently.
Elements to consider when planning such a project include choosing the most appropriate surfacing, positioning equipment at varying heights, creating wide enough routes throughout the space and providing flush transitions so that people with mobility aids are able to move around freely.
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