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Things to do in a Wheelchair

Our Trail Writers always try to write Trails that are accessible and suitable for pushchairs and wheelchairs, but it isn’t easy as town councils don’t seem to make as much provision as they perhaps should do.

I recently wrote an article about spending time with a friend who is in a wheelchair and have reproduced some of it below.

Erica and I regularly go out together.  Over the last four years we have been to lots of different places and done a variety of things and have developed a favourites list! In February we generally go to Nature in Art to see the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition exhibits and in November or December we head to Worcester to tackle the Christmas shopping. During the summer months we go to the Elan Valley and enjoy the scenery and we also reserve one of the months to watch the kite feeding at Rhayader.  We have completed lots of the local Treasure Trails too and they are a particular favourite of ours.

Things to do in a Wheelchair - Erica and Emma tackle a Murder Mystery
Erica and Emma tackle a Murder Mystery

Treasure Trails come in the form of a booklet which Erica is in charge of and she loves to read out the directions and shout stop when she thinks we have reached the next clue!  Having to search high and low for the answers ensures we both get to play on equal terms.  Erica sees things at a different height to me and quite often will spot the plaque or the sign before I do, which gives her immense satisfaction.  There is a lot of giggling along the way!

Occasionally we have embarked on a Treasure Trail and have got distracted, either with lunch or a particularly interesting shop and we haven’t managed to finish the Trail on that day. But it hasn’t mattered because the next time we are looking for a day out, we head back to the town or area we were exploring to finish the Trail off and work out the solution to the puzzle.  We still need to finish the Royal Forest of Dean Trail because on that occasion we took some other friends, started late and subsequently ran out of time. 

On the front of each booklet there is an indication of whether the Trail is suitable for wheelchairs or not and we appreciate this guidance. Not that we always take much notice of it as we’ve got adept at solving inaccessible clues when we need to!  The Royal Forest of Dean Trail is suitable for wheelchairs.

The booklets also show how long the Trail is likely to take in terms of time and again this is a great indicator although Erica and I are quite slow so it always takes longer the guideline. We are never in a great rush though and stop and start along the way making time for coffee and cake! 

We’ve had such wonderfully fun and memorable times together and would unreservedly recommend a Treasure Trail as a thing to do!

For a full list of accessible Treasure Trails, head to the home page of the website, click on the ‘buy a trail’ tab and tick the wheelchair box and a whole list will come up! We would love to hear your experiences of days out with a friend or family member who is in a wheelchair. Head over to facebook, or comment in the box below.

21st January 2015

Posted In: Ideas

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Walk More and Eat Less

Our resolutions this year are very simple – walk more and eat less! Sounds easy enough, although everyone knows resolutions are notoriously hard to stick to.

Walk More

Maybe if we break it down a bit it will be easier. So, to walk more we intend to find things to do that involve walking; regular Treasure Trailing being the most obvious one. There are over 1,000 Treasure Trails all over the UK, so its unlikely that many of our customers will have run out of Trails to tackle and places to explore. No excuses now!

Walk More and Eat Less - get out and walk or skateboard moreThere are lots of ways to walk more that don’t involve planning a day out with family and friends! We will try parking a bit further away from the car park entrance or pay and display machine; taking the stairs instead of the lift, ditching the roller skates; using a pedometer to reach a target of steps; walking to the shops instead of taking the car, using the next bus stop along the route, pottering more in the garden, do more cycling, investing in a dog!  Yes there are lots of ways to walk more and some of course are more practical than others.

Walking is a great way to lose calories and completing a Treasure Trail will burn around 500 to 600 calories.  But only of course, if you don’t stop for ice-cream or a drink along the way!

Eat Less

And so we come to the second half of the resolution – eat less! Three ordinary sized meals a day should be plenty and that’s what we are going to try and stick to! That means no mid morning snacks with coffee, no sneaky piece of cake with afternoon tea, no late night supper of cheese and biscuits and definitely no midnight feasts! Sounds so easy, but snacks come in all forms of tempting little morsels.  For me crisps are my weakness, whilst for others chocolate is their downfall and for some a biscuit with their bedtime cocoa is a must have!

Eating off green or red plates will apparently cause you to eat less – not knowing the science behind it, this could be a red herring, but as we have a red plate at home I might give it a try!

We hope the end result of all this walking more and eating less will mean we are fitter and leaner, so that we can continue to walk more and eat less well beyond retirement and enjoy days out with friends and family for many years to come!

Do let us know what your resolutions and things to do are for 2015. We’d love to hear from you either on Facebook or in the comments box below. Happy New Year!

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8th January 2015

Posted In: Challenges

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