Our residents love living at Fernhill House, but sometimes it’s nice to get out and about too. If you’re keen to take your loved one out for a day, or wondering where the next trip might be on the Fernhill House minibus, here are our picks of some of the best days out which are within easy reach of our home at Fernhill House.
Literally right on our doorstep, less than 10 minutes’ drive, these gorgeous gardens surrounded by ancient parklands and lakes are the perfect place to re-engage with nature. Owned by the Berkeley Family for more than 400 years, this garden is bursting with rare plants, trees and shrubs from all over the world, and is a burst of colour and interest for all ages.
The gardens are flat with easily accessible paths, although some are gravelled which can make wheelchair use a little challenging. The Fountain Gardens paths are narrow and stony, so care needs to be taken when walking in this area. Spetchley Park offer a map on arrival which details which paths and trails are most accessible, and the tea room has a ramp to enable easy disabled access.
If you haven’t been to the cathedral yet, you must put it on your to-do list. It’s been the seat of a bishopric since the 7th century, and even today is still the heart of a vibrant community of clergy and laypeople serving the city of Worcester. It’s one of England’s most beautiful cathedrals and houses the tombs of King John and Prince Arthur.
Blue badge holders can phone ahead to book a disabled parking space right next to the cathedral or can park in King Street car park which is in easy walking distance. There is ramped access to the cathedral entrance, and ramped access also to the cloisters where the shop and café are located. Services provide a hearing loop, toilets and wheelchair accessible and a tactile guide is available for those who are visually impaired.
If you’d love to get out into the open air and enjoy some of Worcestershire’s most beautiful countryside, Pershore Bridges is a great place to go. Access is free, and there is a fantastic picnic area nestled next to a medieval bridge which spans the river Avon. Take some sandwiches and enjoy a relaxing hour or two on the banks of this beautiful waterway.
All picnic benches are wheelchair accessible, and the whole site is relatively flat with just gentle slopes to negotiate. If you fancy staying a bit longer, there is a disabled fishing platform available where you and your loved ones can enjoy some of the best angling in the Midlands.
The beautiful Eastnor Castle is a mere 40-minute drive from Fernhill House. There are 500 acres of parkland to explore, as well as the historical residence which is full of treasures and art. Wheelchair users should keep in mind that many of the paths and the car park and laid to gravel, which can make traversing these areas hard work.
For the house itself, there are some stairs to the State Rooms, but the management of the site have helpfully installed a stair climber for older and disabled visitors. There is also a lift to the first floor, and the café which serves amazing cakes, coffee and tea is fully wheelchair accessible.
If you fancy a jaunt a little further afield, ThinkTank is Birmingham’s Science Museum, and offers some amazing facilities just 50 minutes travelling time from Fernhill House. Their science and industry collection will certainly bring back memories, with devices covering 250 years of technological advancement. They also have a huge exhibit of steam machines as well as the Spitfire Gallery which tells the story of this WWII icon.
The museum offers a wide variety of resources designed to make their exhibits accessible to all. From portable induction loops to large print maps and guides, magnifying glasses to wheelchairs. The whole museum is disability friendly, so wheelchair users should have no concerns, and one caregiver can go in for free with anyone in receipt of DLA or a PIP.
For more information and advice on where to go and how to organise a day out with your loved one, talk to any of our team and we’ll be happy to help.