Accessible York – Encouraging Inclusive Tourism in North Yorkshire

pippa in power-chair, pointing to outdoor sign reading 'speed limit within this yard 15MPH' and laughing

Back in September 2013 when I moved to York for university, it’s safe to say my new friends and I fully made the most of all the city had to offer. As a non-disabled student at the time, there were no barriers holding us back from exploring the tourist attractions and thriving indie businesses that York is increasingly becoming well-known for… besides the pesky student budgets and the occasional hangover, of course.

However, part-way through my degree, chronic illness inconveniently invited itself into my life. And as I’m sure you can imagine, things have never since been the same. Whilst my health has declined over the last 5 years and I’ve become an ambulatory wheelchair user, my eyes have been well and truly opened to the unrelenting and often invisible obstacles that disabled and chronically ill people face in day-to-day life. And the tourism industry here in Yorkshire, wonderful as it is, is no exception to this.

View PostAccessible York – Encouraging Inclusive Tourism in North Yorkshire

Northwood Trail – York’s New Fairy Sanctuary, Buttercrambe Moor Woods

[GIFTED] Many thanks to Northwood Trail for inviting us to this press event. You can find out more about the experience and book tickets for yourself on their website.

path surrounded by trees and forest, with small fairy house nestled in the brances of the tree on the right

If you go down to the woods today… you’ll likely find some extremely excited bloggers gallivanting off to hunt for fairies. Situated in Buttercrambe Moor Woods, just outside of York, Northwood Trail offers a unique and immersive experience in which families can explore the fairy sanctuary and museum, grab a drink and some snacks, and enjoy a leisurely walk the woodland fairy trail.

View PostNorthwood Trail – York’s New Fairy Sanctuary, Buttercrambe Moor Woods

Adaptive Skiing and Disability Snowsport with Snozone Castleford, Yorkshire [AD]

pippa in powerchair, next to wall sign reading welcome to snozone

[AD] Thanks so much to the team at Snozone Castleford for inviting me to visit and for sponsoring this post: more information all about disability snowsport can be found on their website. As always, thoughts and opinions, along with adaptive skiing fangirling, are entirely my own…

It’s safe to say that blogging and writing have presented many opportunities to push myself out of my comfort zone, and there’s no example more illustrative of this than the email in my inbox asking if I’d like to give adaptive skiing a go. As somebody who thrives in a safe, comfortable environment with a cup of tea and a packet of biscuits, I was quite surprised at how keen I found myself for this experience right from the beginning, and it’s safe to say it completely lived up to my expectations.

So, how do you get a vertically challenged, cold-averse individual with limited upper body strength to, y’know, ski? Fortunately, Snozone have this down with their Disability Snowsports programme, based in Castleford, just a stone’s throw away from where I live, and also Milton Keynes. With the aim of making snowsports as accessible and inclusive as possible, both venues boast highly qualified and skilled coaches and adaptive equipment designed to accommodate a range of different disabilities and impairments, ensuring their facilities can be enjoyed by as many people as possible.

To give you an idea of my own experiences hitting the slopes, let’s break this down. Here are five of my worrisome expectations going into the session, vs the surprising reality…

View PostAdaptive Skiing and Disability Snowsport with Snozone Castleford, Yorkshire [AD]

Disabled Coconut – Aaron Simmonds, Great Yorkshire Fringe 2019 (Edinburgh Fringe Preview)

press image of aaron simmonds in wheelchair, facing front and juggling coconuts
Image Credits: Great Yorkshire Fringe

Press tickets #gifted in exchange for review.

★★★★☆

Any performance that kicks off by quizzing unsuspecting audience members on what their favourite disability is, is one that I can 100% get on board with. Within the opening minutes of the set, having already pitted Cerebral Palsy and Muscular Dystrophy against each other and thrown in a disability-oriented Harry Potter reference, I knew I could relax and enjoy Aaron Simmonds’ preview of his upcoming Edinburgh Fringe performances.

With recent credentials including being a BBC New Comedy Award finalist and Jewish Comedian of the Year 2018, Disabled Coconut fearlessly tackles some of the big issues: disability and identity, stigma and public perceptions, sex and relationships, social media trolling, and most importantly, the coveted accessible seats on public transport.

View PostDisabled Coconut – Aaron Simmonds, Great Yorkshire Fringe 2019 (Edinburgh Fringe Preview)