The West Bay Beach Wheelchair scheme was established in March 2023, a partnership between the Town Council, local volunteers including Elaine Leader and Neil Barnes, Parkdean Resorts Ltd, and Dorset Council. West Dorset Mencap, Magna Housing Ltd, and Bridport Round Table have helped to fund the purchase of the equipment.
Along with the beach matting at West Beach, West Bay, the wheelchairs extend beach access to people of all ages and abilities, and are free to hire. Find out how to book, and more, more using the FAQs below.
What beach wheelchairs are available?
There are three beach wheelchairs available. They are quite different in design. You need to decide which one will best suit your mobility needs. The Mobi Chair floats and can enter the sea.
|Hippocampe Beach Wheelchair
|Sandcruiser Beach Wheelchair
|Mobi Chair Floating Beach Wheelchair*
* The Mobi Chair requires support from a trained instructor. This support is provided free of charge to Dorset residents. For those visiting from outside the Dorset area there is a charge of £15 per session (30 minutes maximum), payable to the instructor in cash on arrival.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I hire one?
You need to contact West Bay Holiday Park (tel. 07342 236 443) to make a booking. They will tell you whether a wheelchair can be made available on the day you want. If it can, they will take your details and email you a copy of the booking form (or you can download it here), which you must bring with you when you collect the chair. A minimum of three days’ notice is required.
Is there a charge?
Not for the Hippocampe and Sandcruiser, but the hirer accepts liability for any damage beyond routine wear and tear. For the Mobi Chair, a charge of £15, payable in cash when you collect the chair, is made for the assistance of a trained instructor. The charge is waived for Dorset residents.
What are the hire conditions?
These can be found online here, and are appended to the application form. You will be asked to sign that you have read and understood them when you collect the wheelchair.
Where can I take them?
The wheelchairs must be taken only on the sand/pebble area of West Beach where the beach matting is installed, and The Esplanade (the pedestrian area behind the beach) as necessary to access the beach. Additionally, the Mobi Chair wheelchair can enter the sea.
Where do I collect the wheelchair from/return it to?
The collection and return point is on the slipway in front of the Harbour Master’s office. An attendant will be there and expecting you.
Can I hire without pre-booking?
If there are no bookings for that particular day, it may be possible to arrange a hire but this cannot be guaranteed.