Access the Dales is Launched

Well, we have done it!

We have launched Access the Dales and have just finished our first ever accessible Yorkshire Dales festival. Our festival began with the launch of the charity at Ravenseat where over 50 VIP guests, including our ambassadors Rachel Morris MBE and Peter Lau, were welcomed to the farm by our patron Amanda Owen.

Adam, Debbie and Andy’s son, gave a wonderful speech, which was both inspiring and emotional and Amanda cut the ribbon to declare that the charity was up and running with the first hub at Ravenseat. It was a tremendous sight to see all of our new wheelchairs lined up in a row.

We now have 14 different all terrain wheelchairs for people to borrow throughout the Yorkshire Dales.

After the speeches we all enjoyed a walk on the fells with the wheelchairs.

For so many of our disabled guests, it was the first time that they, and their families, have been able to access the countryside. It was a pleasure to see their smiles and share their tears of joy as they breathed in the 360-degree views of Swalesdale.

After our hike, Amanda and Clive welcomed us back to the farm with a bowl of hearty soup, which was much appreciated by everyone, as it was pretty cold up on the fells.

We are delighted that Jack and Theo have agreed to be our youngest ambassadors for our charity.

The celebrations continued into the evening with a Ceilidh Dance at The Engine Shed in Kirkby Stephen. A huge thank you to The Great Northern Ceilidh Band who donated their time and music to our fund-raising event. Everyone who came had a wonderful time and thoroughly enjoyed the supper that was provided by The Bull Inn in Nateby

On Sunday we held our Inclusion and Diversity Day in Kirkby Stephen and enjoyed forest school activities, led by Lily from Kindling Play and Training. There certainly was no shortage of marshmellows for toasting on the day!

On Monday we were joined by TerrainHopper for a ramble at Gordale Scar. BBC news also came along to interview Debs and film our walk in the stunning location in Malhamdale.

Tuesday was all about Boccia and we were delighted to be supported by the Settle Carlisle Railway Development Company who laid on a minibus for guests arriving at Kirby Stephen Railway Station which took us down into the town to join Anne Craddock and the ladies from Kirkby Stephen and Warton WI for an afternoon of Boccia; a game that has been made popular since its inclusion into the Paralympic games in 1984.