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Accessible matting to be trialled

Accessible matting to be trialled

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This Saturday, November 5, a trial will be held of wheelchair accessible beach matting at Alexandra Headland Beach.

Starting at 10am, the trial is an opportunity for Sunshine Coast Regional Council to test one of a number of beach matting products which have been designed to make access to the beach easier for people in wheelchairs, people unsteady on their feet, parents with strollers and the elderly.

This is the Sunshine Coast’s opportunity to send a clear message to Council that this kind of matting is both needed and wanted on some of our beaches. The best way to do this is a show of numbers at the trial this weekend.

Sunshine Coast Council has organised the trial after lengthy community consultation.

121 Care has committed $1,500 to the installation of the first accessible beach matting on the Sunshine Coast while Councillor Jason O’Pray has contributed $2,500. A successful trial will go a very long way to encouraging Council to commit further funds to make this a reality.

The trial starts at 10am and is expected to last about two hours – depending on the number of people wanting to use the matting. The matting will be set up at the ramp near the lifeguard tower.

Council has organised additional disability parking spots at the beach for the day.

121 Care believes the installation of beach matting will go a long way to improving the quality of life for people with disabilities living and holidaying on the Sunshine Coast. Research has proven being at the beach has enormous and numerous health benefits including boosting your immune system and soothing emotions.

The product being tested this Saturday is Mobi Mat’s portable roll-out beach access mat. The matting is designed to be rolled out of a morning and rolled back up again at the end of the day for internal storage.

At least one more trial of a comparable product is expected to be held in coming weeks on the Sunshine Coast.

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