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May 2019

Exciting new accessibilty enhancements to your centre

Over £40,000 worth of accessibility enhancements, including new improved changing and shower facilities and two new pool hoists were officially opened by the Mayor of Maidstone Cllr David Naghi yesterday.

We already had a pool hoist, which helps people get in and out of the pool, plus a range of other accessible features, like large automatic doors, all floors being lift accessible, and guide dogs being welcome on site.

Work to the existing disabled changing room boasts among other improvements, a changing table with assisted hoist and an additional space with a further shower with wet and dry seating providing an improved disabled changing area.

The facilities now meet the standards set by the organisation Changing Places who campaign on behalf of people who cannot use standard accessible toilets. This includes people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people. This means it satisfies all necessary criteria to provide the most accessible space possible for disabled users to get changed in.

Work to the existing disabled changing room boasts among other improvements, a changing table with assisted hoist and an additional space with a further shower with wet and dry seating providing an improved disabled changing area.

The facilities now meet the standards set by the organisation Changing Places who campaign on behalf of people who cannot use standard accessible toilets. This includes people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people. This means it satisfies all necessary criteria to provide the most accessible space possible for disabled users to get changed in.

These new facilities have been funded by Maidstone Leisure Trust, Maidstone Borough Council, Serco and Swim Mobility, the disabled swimming club based at the centre.

Clive Bradburn, Chairman of the Maidstone Leisure Trust commented:

“Some time ago when I was Chairman of Swim Mobility, I was approached by a wheelchair user from the club asking for improvements to the disability changing rooms at Maidstone Leisure Centre. It is extremely gratifying now to see the project coming to fruition. This could not have happened if it was not for funding from the Trust and the generosity of Swim Mobility, Maidstone BC and Serco, who each donated significant sums towards it.

“I am also most grateful to the team at Maidstone Leisure Centre for managing the project and for all of their assistance. I am sure this project will be of great benefit to those who need more specialised facilities.”

James Reynolds, Contract Manager for Maidstone Leisure Centre said:

“We’re already a very accessible centre, but these improvements really move us up a division, and getting the stamp of approval from Changing Places for our new changing area is just the icing on the cake.”

 

March 2019
 


 

Sports grants up for grabs from leisure trust

Maidstone Leisure Trust (MLT) is asking for local sports organisations and individuals to apply for funding from its grant scheme, which offers up to £1,000 (£500 for individuals) to clubs and sportspeople based in the Maidstone area, including users of the Maidstone Leisure Centre.

Since starting in 2015, the grant scheme has awarded over £25,000 to deserving local individuals and groups helping them compete, keep active and enjoy their leisure time. Examples of grants the trust has already given include ones to a new Junior Park Run group based at Parkwood, help for the Maidstone United Raiders, a team of disabled footballers which operates alongside Maidstone United FC, plus funding to buy new sports kit for special needs school Five Acre Wood.

Alexandra Meaders, Fundraiser for Five Acre Wood School said:

“I am not sure who is prouder – the staff and teachers of Five Acre Wood School seeing our students in their team strip or the students themselves who are extremely chuffed to be able to turn up to sporting events looking so uniform and professional!

“We are all incredibly grateful to MLT for facilitating this fabulous resource. We chose a generic kit so that it could work for various sports and work for both our male and female students. The students always hold their heads high when representing Five Acre Wood in sport; this sponsored kit allows them to hold themselves even higher!”

Clive Bradburn, Chairman of the Trust said:

“Although we issue the grants each April and October, we suggest to people that they apply throughout the year. In March and September, we decide which applications to support and how best we can help.

“When we read statements like Alexandra’s, and hear about the gratitude from our other recipients, it really makes us proud of what we as a Trust have achieved since starting the scheme in 2015.”

Grants are available up to a maximum of £1,000 for clubs and organisations and £500 for individuals for any single application. For people interested in applying for a grant in 2019, visit the trust’s website - http://www.maidstoneleisure.org/grants/apply-for-a-grant/ to download an application form, or email them at info@maidstoneleisure.org.

 

 

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