This is an archived press release
Thursday 14 May 2015
The installation of a new gate has opened up a world of adventure for disabled outdoor enthusiasts in the Peak District National Park.
Work by the Peak District National Park Authority and landowners Yorkshire Water on the gate in Langsett Woods has made a new route accessible to Mountain Trike users.
Mark Adler travelled from his home in Newcastle to join a ramble organised by Experience Community CIC. He said: "Until last year I was a keen long-distance cyclist and hiker. Becoming disabled has been a massive blow and I have spent much of the past few months struggling to adjust. Until quite recently my life has been defined by what I can’t do, and I am just starting to come out of the darkness and explore the things that I can do.
"We wheeled for about three miles putting the chair through its paces, climbing some pretty rocky hills, through deep mud and down forest trails over thick pine needles and slippery tree roots. I would never have thought it possible to cross these terrains in a chair. I arrived home exhausted, but that wonderful sense of exhaustion when you’ve pushed yourself to your limit - what a great feeling that is."
Craig Grimes, founder and director of Experience Community, said: "The previous gate was too narrow for the trikes to get through so we are delighted. We had a great time climbing up Swinden Lane and descending through the woodland. I hope that we can continue working with both Yorkshire Water and the Peak District National Park to improve access for disabled people and deliver such positive experiences as Mark had."
Gordon Danks, Peak District National Park area ranger at Langsett, said: "Yorkshire Water have done a lot of work in the past to make the area more accessible to everyone and this new gate has given people using the trikes a figure-of-eight route. The technology in these trikes is moving at such a pace now and what was a relatively simple fix has clearly made a big difference."
Alastair Harvey, recreation advisor at Yorkshire Water, said: "We are committed to opening up as much of our land as possible, making it accessible and inclusive so it can be enjoyed by as many people as possible. We have developed easy-access trails and continue to audit routes to remove the barriers to access for users across Yorkshire’s communities. We will continue to work in partnership, making further investments to accommodate wheelchair and Mountain Trike access on our landholding."
With further support from Yorkshire Water, a film of the Langsett route with full information will be available on the Experience Community website later this year: www.experiencecommunity.co.uk