PRESS RELEASE: Discover accessible sports in the Thames Valley at Rivertime Accessible Regatta

SAVE THE DATE:  Wednesday 14 June 2017

Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre

You are invited to the first ever Rivertime Accessible Regatta on the River Thames –
a showcase of the wide variety of accessible activities for children and young people with disabilities in the Thames Valley

On Wednesday 14 June, over 400 pupils from local special needs schools will take part in the Rivertime Accessible Regatta and for many this will be their first experience with competitive bell boating, accessible sailing, wheelchair powerboating and canoeing. Organisers, Rivertime Boat Trust together with Give Them a Sporting Chance have also called upon other charities and organisations to provide a chance for the regatta participants to try out other land-based accessible sports, such as new age curling, archery and wheelchair basketball.

“On some days, we have 18 youngsters with disabilities and within half an hour of being here they are all doing something – you know – not just sitting in a boat watching the countryside go by.  They are actually doing something and that is so lovely.”
(Roy May, Accessible Boat Club)

Why is this event unique?

The Rivertime Accessible Regatta is the first event of its kind in the Thames Valley and will be the first competitive sporting event for many of the participants. The regatta will see several hundreds of pupils taking part and some schools are also planning to bring some of their Year 10 trainee Sports Leaders to support the teams.

The Rivertime Accessible Regatta does not aim to be a stand-alone event and plans are already underway to make this an annual event on the river. In addition, participants are encouraged to follow through with the ‘chain of goodness’, by raising funds for a charity of their choice in whatever way they choose; while the organisers are in discussion with other organisations along the River Thames to stage similar events.

What is the opportunity?

  • Find out about the benefits of getting children and young people with disabilities on the water and learn about the challenges these activities pose
  • Discover which accessible sports are taking place in the Thames Valley
  • Gain insights on accessible sports from a variety of experts available for interview, including:
  • Simon and Pat Davis MBE, Rivertime Boat Trust Chairman and Co-founder
  • Anne Wadsworth OBE, Give Them a Sporting Chance Director
  • Lucy Herbert, Rivertime Boat Trust Head Skipper
  • Jonathon Hobbs, Hobbs of Henley Managing Director and Rivertime Boat Club Trustee
  • John Jenkins MBE, SportsAble President
  • Peter May, Rivertime Accessible Regatta Director
  • Charles Reed, English Federation of Disability Sports Chairman and Sport England Trustee
  • Be inspired by the volunteers and carers’ enthusiasm in ensuring that children and young people with disabilities get the chance to enjoy a fulfilling life

When and where?

Wednesday 14 June 2017, 10am – 2pm
You are invited to drop in at any time, but please let us know your expected time of arrival, so that we can meet your needs: arranging interviews and photography as required.
More information on the schedule of the day will become available in due course.

Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre,
Bisham Village, Marlow Road, Bisham, Marlow SL7 1RR

RSVP

Jana Fickerova or Jane Bevan at Firebird PR on 01235 835297 / 07977 459547 or via email to enquiries@firebirdpr.co.uk

–  ENDS –

For further information, interview requests, or images please contact Firebird PR:

T: 01235 835 297/ 07977 459 547

E: enquiries@firebirdpr.co.uk

 

About Rivertime Boat Trust

The Rivertime Boat Trust is a charity registered with the Charity Commission to provide and maintain a specially constructed boat and other facilities for the disabled and disadvantaged; organise trips in the boat on the middle Thames between Windsor and Oxford; and work with other charities involved with the disabled and disadvantaged that have similar objectives.

In designing the Rivertime Accessible Regatta, the Rivertime Boat Trust is being advised by a panel of experts on disability and aspires to stimulate children and young people with disabilities to develop a long-term involvement with accessible sports.

For more information, visit www.rivertimeboattrust.org.uk

About Give Them a Sporting Chance

Give Them a Sporting Chance offers those with disabilities and their carers an opportunity to turn their sporting and recreational dreams into reality. All recipients are recommended by organisations and, in return for living their dream, those who receive chances raise funds for another charity of their choice (but not Give Them a Sporting Chance). This makes the charity unique.

For more information, visit www.givethemasportingchance.com

Event: Dyslexia Information Day (Free)

Dyslexia Information Day Logo

Saturday 20th May 2017

Enginuity, Coalbrookdale Telford
Sat Nav: TF8 7DQ

Free Entry

Pay & Display Parking

Free advice & guidance for all ages

Drop in between 11am—3pm

Be inspired by and talk to local dyslexics

Find out about local services and helpful products

Some exhibitors will have goods on sale

Refreshments on sale!

Dyslexia Information Day Poster

Talking Inclusion – Usher Syndrome ~ Molly Watts

Molly Watt Trust Logo

Open to Inclusion?

Check out our friend Molly Watts who is a consultant and advocate for Usher Syndrome.
She believes that the world has to be accessible to all.  Follow her website and blog via http://www.mollywatt.com/

Find out what Usher Syndrome is via her video blog here:

And how assistive technology is an enabling tool here:

Neurodiversity: Autism – resources for families and adults

Disability Co-operative Network

We have a number of twitter feeds about what neurodiversity is and how it is a positive asset to the workplace. There are a number of excellent organisations and associations, particularly local groups who have a great deal of experience. These organisations are happy to be contacted to raise awareness, inclusive practice and support.

Neurodiversity is Dyslexia, Dyspraxia,  Attention Deficit Disorder, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia, ASD (autistic spectrum disorder) and Tourettes. Please see this diagram of profiles and how they relate to each other please see: http://www.achieveability.org.uk/files/1275491669/neuro-diversity-diagram.pdf

This page focuses on autism spectrum disorder and has a number of links and resources. This page sits alongside case studies and information available on this website. The aim for these resources is to support adults and families for inclusive practice in the workplace and service delivery of museums and cultural venues in the UK.

Workplace
Training (including online training that can start as little as £25), awareness, guidance and workplace support go to the National Autistic Society http://www.autism.org.uk/

Access to Work: Central Government funded scheme for people who may need support in the workplace https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/access-to-work-factsheet/access-to-work-factsheet-for-customers

Commonwealth Youth Council Toolkit for autism http://bit.ly/2ojQnzY

Families
Welcoming families and children with autism in museums via Kids in Museums  http://kidsinmuseums.org.uk/2016/04/04/welcoming-families-and-young-people-with-autism/

Autism in Museums (a blog site of articles by @TinctureofMuse)
https://tinctureofmuseum.wordpress.com/category/autism-in-museums/

Museum of Minds (a blog site by Jack Welch) http://museumofminds.wixsite.com/momcampaign

Museums and Autism (a tumblr site of articles and links by Sally Fort) http://museumsandautism.tumblr.com/

Autism in the Museum (U.S. site by Lisa Jo Rudy, consultant and writer) http://www.autisminthemuseum.org/

Remember to check this website and our twitter feed (@museumDCN) regularly for regular information, case studies and news.

PRESS RELEASE: Disabled anglers now able to fly fish for trout on Draycote Reservoir ~ The Wheelyboat Trust

The Wheelyboat Trust Logo

Release date: 7 April 2017

The first wheelchair accessible Coulam 16 Wheelyboat at Draycote Reservoir in Warwickshire will be launched on Wednesday 12 April, following a successful fundraising campaign supported by Draycote Fly-Fishers Association and led by one of its members.  An established trout fishery for many years, Draycote Reservoir is a 600-acre lowland reservoir near Rugby famous for its buzzer hatches and large grown-on brown and rainbow trout.

Designed and developed by The Wheelyboat Trust and JM Coulam Boatbuilders, the Coulam 16 Wheelyboat stems from the fundamental desire of disabled anglers and wheelchair users in particular, to have the same opportunities to fish as the able-bodied.  The boat is based on Jim Coulam’s 16’ reservoir fishing boat design and has been adapted to provide wheelchair users with step free access on board.  With an open cockpit and level floor throughout, the disabled angler can choose to sit at the bow or the stern and is able to drive and operate the boat quite independently.

The unique design features of the boat are not immediately obvious, making it a thoroughly enjoyable experience for disabled anglers.  Wheelchair users board the Coulam 16 Wheelyboat via a ramp from a pontoon onto a hydraulic platform that lowers to floor level.  Removable handrails around the platform help keep the angler secure and simplify the boarding and disembarking procedure, which means that only one able-bodied helper is required for assistance.  The boat has a 6’ beam, low centre of gravity and is very stable.  In normal conditions wheelchair brakes are sufficient to hold the angler in place, but D-rings on the floor provide secure strapping points when required.

The project cost £9,200 and was funded by the Janet Nash Charitable Settlement, Draycote Fly-Fishers Association and their members, and Fishery Management (UK) Ltd which has been running the fishery on Draycote since 2011.

Andy Beadsley, Director of The Wheelyboat Trust, says “Angling is an activity that most disabled people can participate in very successfully given the right access and equipment.  Our Wheelyboats overcome all the difficulties of accessing waters like Draycote and we are delighted that Ifor and his team have become the latest fishery to operate a Wheelyboat.  This is the 180th Wheelyboat to be launched and is a particularly proud moment for me being the 100th Wheelyboat launched since I took over as Director in 2002.”

The Wheelyboat Trust relies on the support of individuals, companies and charitable organisations to fund its activities. Donations can be made in a variety of ways including online atwww.wheelyboats.org/donate.html.

-ENDS-

 

Media Contacts

Jane Bevan or Jana Fickerova, Firebird Public Relations

T: 01235 835297 / 07977 459 547

E: jb@firebirdpr.co.uk / jf@firebirdpr.co.uk

 

About accessible angling

  • The need for accessible fishing boats has come about by the inaccessible nature of reservoirs, lakes, ponds and rivers to wheelchair users and others with mobility problems: the banks are often steep and unmade and where there is access, it may be limited and offer little opportunity to fish the water effectively.
  • Fluctuating water levels, the norm on most reservoirs, make the problems of access even worse.  Standard boats have not been designed to accommodate wheelchair users and are very difficult to get into.  Once on board the disabled angler is usually totally reliant on a boat partner.
  • Whichever Wheelyboat model is preferred (the Trust currently supplies four models – two purpose-built fishing boats and two multi-purpose models including a 12 seater inshore powerboat), Wheelyboats overcome all the difficulties. They make the entire water accessible, are simplicity itself to board and the level floor provides access throughout thus giving the disabled user the dignity of their own independence.  Wheelyboats enable disabled people to participate in waterborne activities alongside and on equal terms with their able-bodied counterparts.
  • Fishing has many charms and where suitable facilities are provided, such as at Draycote Reservoir, it is an activity that most disabled people can participate in very effectively.

 

About The Wheelyboat Trust

  • The Wheelyboat Trust is a registered charity dedicated to providing mobility impaired people, young and old, with the opportunity and freedom to participate in waterborne activities all over the UK.  Its role is to help and encourage venues open to the public to acquire Wheelyboats for their disabled visitors and to help groups and organisations acquire Wheelyboats for their own use.
  • The Wheelyboat Trust was founded in 1984 when it was originally called the Handicapped Anglers Trust.  The first Wheelyboat built received its official launch from HRH Prince Charles at Fishmongers’ Hall in London.  In 2004, the charity was renamed The Wheelyboat Trust to reflect its broader aims and the clear need for Wheelyboats beyond the fishing lake for disabled, elderly and infirm, families and community groups for recreation and sporting pursuits.
  • The Trust has designed 7 different Wheelyboat models since its work began in 1984: Mk I, Mk II, Mk III, Mk IV, Coulam 15, Coulam 16 and Coulam Wheelyboat V20.  180 Wheelyboats have so far been supplied across the UK, Ireland and Denmark.
  • For more information, visit www.wheelyboats.org

About Draycote Reservoir Trout Fishery

  • The fishery is within easy access of the M1, M6, M40 and M45
  • 32 boats all with outboards are available giving access to Draycote’s 600 acres and its famed shoals (underwater islands).
  • Anglers fishing from a drifting boat, fishing a team of dries or buzzers over and around the shoals, will experience the finest top of the water fly fishing any midlands reservoir has to offer.
  • Draycote is a popular competition venue with many clubs and associations enjoying its excellent fishing and facilities.
  • The team at Draycote feel passionate about their sport and are keen to encourage other anglers into fly fishing, or if required, to try and improve their knowledge. Visit the website’s Guiding/Tuition pagefor further details or call 01788 812018.
  • Fishery Management (UK) Ltd is owned by Ifor Jones and runs the fishing at Thornton, Foremark, Draycote and Eyebrook reservoirs.
  • For more information, visit www.flyfishdraycote.co.uk

 

About J M Coulam Boatbuilders

  • Established for 24 years, they are one of the largest small boat builders in the UK having designed and built over 1,000 commercial boats.
  • Specialising in small day hire boats, they have expanded with help from The Wheelyboat Trust into larger commercial craft.
  • All boats are individually built in GRP to customer’s own specification.
  • Their own engineering and stainless steel fabrication shop allows them to custom make fittings and components and almost everything else.
  • They supply custom built trailers for all types of applications and are a leading floating pontoon manufacturer.