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Castle Park launches Changing Places and improves its facilities

The improved facilities are conveniently located beside the Park Café

Date issued: 24 May 2019

Visitors to Colchester’s award-winning Castle Park will be able to make use of a new Changing Places facility and refurbished public toilet block, once they open in Upper Castle Park on 25 May.

These improved facilities are conveniently located beside the Park Café, next to the playground, and include toilets for men, women and disabled people as well as baby change facilities, a wheelchair ramp and improved steps for access.

Changing Places helps more than 250,000 severely disabled people who are unable to use standard disabled toilets, such as those with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people. Each Changing Place provides equipment, such as a height-adjustable changing bench, and a hoist enables those in need and their carers to use a toilet in safety and comfort.

Those wishing to make use of the Changing Places facility in Castle Park will need to submit a one-time online application and provide evidence of the need to use the facility, before being provided with an access code. Castle Park will also be added to the Changing Places map of destinations, so that visitors planning a trip to the area are aware of its existence and location.

The facilities in Castle Park have been improved and extended to ensure that the park meets the needs and expectations of all its visitors.

The works have been funded with £171,000 of Colchester Borough Council’s New Homes Bonus and a £40,000 contribution from Essex County Council towards the Changing Places facility.

Councillor Martin Goss, Portfolio Holder for Waste, Transport and Environment, said: “It’s important that we ensure our public conveniences meet everyone’s needs and expectations. Castle Park is the first outdoor setting for a Changing Place in Colchester and these new and improved facilities will bring even more visitors to this fantastic, award-winning Park.”

Cllr Louise McKinlay, Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Children and Families, said: “The changing places scheme is so important in supporting disabled people and their families. I’m delighted that a new facility will be opened in Colchester’s award-winning Castle Park.

“This park is a beautiful place and with the opening of this new facility all can now enjoy what Castle Park has to offer.”

Additional baby change and disabled facilities will open in Lower Castle Park in mid-June following refurbishment works.

For further information about the Changing Places in Castle Park and to apply to use the facility, visit: www.colchester.gov.uk/changingplaces and allow up to five working days for applications to be processed.

To find out more about visiting Castle Park, visit www.colchester.gov.uk/castlepark

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