Roof top Views
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This visit included a person who uses: Wheelchair
This is a reasonably new country park on the Thames Estuary overlooking the new Superport. The round visitor centre has a gently sloping ramp going all the way round, rather like a helter skelter, which enables access to the roof. There is a free to view (donations welcome) telescope at the top which is on a raised platform so not accessible to wheelchairs unfortunately, but even without it you can see for miles. The inside is similarly ramped and access inside is good. There is a small cafe with adequate space between the tables. Outside as well as paths leading over the country park there are sculptures and a lovely wooden childrens play area, also accessible. A lot of thought has gone in to the design of this centre and it works. My only quibble might be there are small draught sills on the doorways to negotiate, but because it is on a windy river site these are necessary for comfort.
Transport & Parking
You need a car to get here as there is a long rough road (3 cattle grids) through the country park before you arrive at the visitor centre. There are 4 disabled parking spaces on smooth tarmac, The rest of the plentiful parking is on rough stones.
Access from the disabled parking still involves a walk of about 20 yards. There is a wide wooden bridge giving access to the centre. There are two double doors to go through, to keep the wind out. One of these was kept propped open on our visit. There are benches for seating on the ground floor of the centre, then steps or the curving ramp to access the cafe level. There is a door to the outside ramp in the cafe area.
Spacious and clean toilet with plenty of grab rails. You might need to move the bin but nothing new there!
There is a manned reception desk as you come in and the staff were very helpful. They actually have access surveys to fill in and leave with comments.
Anything else you wish to tell us?
I would recommend this for a visit. Although we didn't go down any of the trails on our blustery visit we spent some time looking at and taking photos of the rabbit sculptures which abound near the car park.
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