A really interesting and varied day out
This review is especially helpful for those who have or use the following: Walking Aid, Mobility Scooter
Lots to see and do, far more than one day’s worth even if we moved at normal speed! Would be great to see them get more scooters so we could have had one, but got around OK and saw plenty without, super lunch at Orangery and visits to Evolution Garden, Waterlily house and Palm house all were great. Took last trip of day on land train and enjoyed chance to at least glimpse further parts of Gardens
Transport & Parking
Free parking for disabled at Brentford Gate, Ferry Lane. Difficult journey in heavy traffic meant we arrived at 11am (weekday in term time) - plenty of spaces left both disabled and in ordinary part. Watch out for new one way system round Kew green, we struggled to get on correct route even using Sat nav.
We would have really liked to get a mobility scooter, but when I rang up that morning I was told that you normally have to book them couple weeks in advance, we don’t like to do that because don’t know if Martin will feel up to it or weather will be OK! Would be great if they could find/ source funding to substantially increase the number they have. We’d also like to see the ability to book tickets and board the land train at Brentford Gate, many disabled must arrive at that one as often need own transport for various reasons, would have been far more useful if we could have used it to get from A to B during day, though we did enjoy the round trip. There is plenty to see and do within a fairly short distance of Brentford gate, though we found the first part of the walk in, round the featureless hedge of the Childrens Garden quite boring, as walking very slow - a few feature plants, or display boards with interesting facts or even a quiz, at intervals, would have been a big improvement!
They seemed fine, in good order and clean
All staff friendly and helpful, the folk running land train particularly nice and we enjoyed the commentary
Anything else you wish to tell us?
Consider scheduling visits to the glasshouses either early or late in the day, as school parties can be a bit overwhelming in the confined space, both in terms of noise level and difficulty of getting past them, or them getting past you, in narrow spaces eg in water lily house or palm house…. Step free access to palm house rather limited, and the entrance doors extremely heavy to open and hold in place, we really struggled with Martins (large all terrain) rollator, a wheelchair user on their own would find it a real challenge, though helpful members of public would probably rally round… We loved the new Evolution Garden, lots of fascinating information well presented, lots to see and learn in small area, and visually attractive as well, an excellent addition.