It’s that time of year again, when all the songs start talking about sleigh bells jingling and chestnuts roasting on an open fire. But as great as Christmas traditions can be, you shouldn’t let yourself get stuck in rut. Times change, and we all have more opportunities for adventure with each passing year – that’s particularly true for those of us with mobility challenges. This year, why not try a new experience to shake up your Christmas traditions? Here’s five of our favourites for Christmas 2019:
1. Frankfurt Christmas Market in Birmingham
Few cultures do Christmas as well as the Germany… so why not embrace your yuletide cheer by attending the largest authentic German Christmas Market outside of Germany? Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market is packed with attractions: over 80 stalls selling craft, decorations, traditional handmade gifts, and festive food and drink from Frankfurt. It’s completely accessible, with something for everyone – meaning it’s a great place to take the whole family.
2. Accessible Ice Skating
If Christmas markets are a bit slow for you, perhaps you’d like to strut your stuff on the ice instead? You can find accessible skating at the Natural History Museum’s ice rink, Cardiff’s Winter Wonderland ice rink, and Brighton’s Royal Pavilion ice rink. Depending on where and when you go, you can join in on a regular skating session in your wheelchair, or take part in an accessible-skating only session, which tends to be slower.
3. A Chatsworth Christmas
Few pictures are quite so traditionally British as the stately house at Christmas time. But you don’t have to be lord of the manor to experience the festive fun… Chatsworth House in Derbyshire’s “Christmas at Chatsworth” seasonal event is completely accessible – and even has quiet days, which feature no music or queuing, for those of us who want a gentler experience. This year, the event will be tracing Santa’s footsteps on a ‘round the world’ adventure, reminiscent of Jules Verne’s classic adventure novel Around the World in 80 Days.
4. Accessible Snowsports
Manchester snowsport facility Chill Factor is the home of Disability Snowsport UK, meaning it’s got everything you need for a day of accessible sporting fun on the snow. Specially trained instructors and equipment make pastimes like adaptive skiing safe and easy – so if you fancy doing something a little more active this Christmas, you’ve just found the perfect accessible adventure.
5. Harry (Potter) Christmas
Your Happy Christmas can finally become a Harry Christmas, as the Christmas-themed Harry Potter studio tour Hogwarts in the Snow is now open. This is one for younger readers and their families, and is sure to leave children bristling with excitement at the prospect of going to Hogwarts. Almost the whole tour is accessible, and you can check out lots of sets from the movies – the stage decorated for the Yule Ball, the Great Hall set for a festive banquet, and more.
Christmas should be fun, and part of that means making sure your mobility needs are accounted for. Drop us a line if you need any help preparing for the festive season. We will be closed between 24th December and 1st January, but reopen on the 2nd January as normal. But, assuming you don’t need our help and we don’t speak to you again beforehand – Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the team at Shire Mobility!