• melissaeshults

Family Day Out and Accessibility

Every time I go out I'm going to use this space to share the accessible and not very accessible places we've visited.

Mead Open Farm, gorgeous farm with lots to do with activities suitable for most ages. Mead open farm is situated In Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.

Accessibility I found it pretty amazing all round, somethings that could be improved but in general they have made the farm accessible.


Arriving


We went by car which is the easiest option, But Leighton Buzzard train station is about 4 miles from the farm and you can get a taxi from the station and be dropped off right outside the building. There are no kerbs or steps so great for prams and wheelchairs, seating is available outside the entrance.

Mead Open Farm has 6 disabled parking bays and they are about 20-25 meters from the entrance. The entrance doesn't have an automatic door however the door is pretty light as I found out when my eldest went straight in.

In the Main entrance/ ticketing office there is a hand rail available and a slight ramp, the gap between the desk and hand rail easily fits a wheelchair.

There was no seating available in the ticketing office which wasn't a bother for myself but could pose an issue for another person definitely something to keep in mind.

The ticketing desk is low which is great as serving wheelchair users would be easy for the workers and individual buying tickets to enter. There is a discount for careers but the disabled individual would have to bring PIP or DLA letter confirming this. Easily forgotten so my mum and I keep a copy of ours in my mums car.

I didn't see hearing loop system installed, but the staff are very helpful and I'm sure they would find a way of communicating in a that situation, whether it be a pen and paper of typing it on a computer/ tablet. I'm not entirely sure on this one as I am not deaf and don't use this equipment.


Public Toilets


There is two sets of public toilets, one in the indoor play barn by the café and the other in main block next to the shop and main entrance and exit. All toilets seemed to have level access and they are all on ground level. 

There is also an unisex accessible toilet and baby change in the main shop and the indoor play barn. These toilets have no steps or ramps. There are horizontal and vertical hand rails either side of the both sink and toilet.

From what I saw there was no emergency system in place in the accessible toilets, this can be a risk for some individuals including myself. I took my sister in with me because if something was to happen I knew there was a definite way of getting help. My advice would be check out the toilets is there is an emergency system in place that I've missed that's great, if there isn't you'll be able to risk assess and create your own plan of action.


Outside Area.


There is a large grass area which has the animals in there paddocks. There is a wide concrete paths and mown grass paths leading up to the paddocks. some areas did have gravel making it a little uneven but for the most park it was still okay to get the pram and wheelchair across.

There are benches a short distance from each other making it easy to sit and have a rest, the benches weren't too low and all the ones I sat on where even and not lopsided.

There is a picnic area on the grass that seemed to be levelled out well with more benches that had tables attached. Plenty of room and beautiful scenery.


Overall it was an absolutely amazing day out minimal hurdles and lots of fun. I would recommended this farm to friends and family, if you have the chance visit Mead Open farm, it is a great place.








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