Access for all
We work hard to provide a friendly, accessible environment for all our visitors and the widest possible access to our trails, buildings and events.
Getting here and parking
Moors Valley is easily accessible by car, sign posted with brown tourist information signs from the A31 at Ashley Heath or approach roads from West Moors.
There are 13 disabled parking spaces in the first car park loop, near to the ice cream kiosk. If your vehicle is exempt from road tax due to disability reasons, that vehicle may park for free. To have your parking validated simply come to the Information Point in the Visitor Centre with your registration number and blue badge along with one of the following:
- V5 vehicle registration document
- Enhanced PIP certificate
- Certificate of entitlement (in the form of Certificate of Entitlement to Disability Living Allowance, An Annual Certificate of Entitlement or a DLA 404 Certificate)
You must be visiting in the car that the tax exemption applies to, for the free parking to apply. For regular visitors an annual pass is available.
Our friendly staff at the Information Point in the Visitor Centre are happy to help advise you on the best routes available to suit your needs to make the most of your visit.
The Visitor Centre is approx 100m from the Visitor Centre along a tarmac footpath which is fairly smooth however there are some short sections where the gradient is 10% or more. Access to the Visitor Centre is through wide automatic doors.
An induction loop is available and we are happy to provide large print leaflets on request. A braille version of the map leaflet is available on request.
Dogs, including assistance dogs are welcome at the Information Point and in the exhibition area. At the rear of the Visitor Centre there is a patio area for the restaurant which can be accessed via a slope. Wheelchair accessible picnic tables are provided.
The toilets including a Changing Places standard toilet with tracking hoist system (Safe Working Load is 200kg / 440lbs maximum) and height adjustable changing bed, an Ambulant Disabled toilet and large family cubicles can be found on the outside of the building. A RADAR key is required for the Changing Places standard toilet, please ask staff at the Information Point for a loan key if you do not have your own.
Additional accessible toilets can be found at Kingsmere Station and in the Golf Centre.
There are many paths and waymarked trails at Moors Valley covering a range of terrain and habitats. Some routes are more accessible than others.
Please contact the Rangers if you would like to discuss which of the paths may be most suitable to your needs.
Please note – The waymarked routes are marked with posts marked in the appropriate colour. Colourblind visitors might struggle to tell the difference between some of the colours. A map showing all the routes is available from the Visitor Centre, priced £1.
These are some of the most popular routes:
Lake and Riverside Walk – 3/4 mile (1.2km)
A fairly flat tarmac path around Moors Lake with plenty of resting places along the route. There is one short rise and fall over the railway which might be difficult in a low powered mobility scooter or manual wheelchair. A handrail is provided on this section. Toilets at the Kingsmere Railway Station can be found half way along the route. Waymarked with round posts with brown bands.
A more detailed accessibility map is available to download for this route.
The Play Trail and Tree Top Trail – 1 mile
Clearly waymarked by fingerposts and with 10 unique wooden play sculptures along the route, the Play Trail is a favourite with families. The trail follows unsurfaced forest tracks so there can be uneven sections and exposed tree roots in places, so if you have anything other than an all-terrain mobility scooter please ask a Ranger for suitability. The optional extra route takes you to the Tree Top Trail which is unfortunately not suitable for wheelchairs or mobility scooters, however these can follow the connecting path on the ground. Picnic tables are provided at the Snake Pit and Webs structures.
The Corsican Circuit – 2 miles (3.2km)
Starting at the Visitor Centre this circuit takes you in a loop through the Forest along level, wide compacted gravel tracks. This track is also a cycle route.
The Crane Loop – 2 miles (3.2km)
This loop can be accessed from the Corsican Circuit and takes you alongside the Crane Lake and River through the Golf Course. Mainly tarmac with some gravel and dirt sections, narrow in places with one short hill. Suitable in all weathers. There is an additional section which takes you out of Moors Valley into Potterne Park and returns via Potterne Wood.
A map showing the most accessible tracks is available from the Information Point.
Wheelchair and Mobility Scooter Hire
A conventional wheelchair is available to borrow (£10 deposit required). It can be booked in advance to avoid disappointment, using our online booking system or by phoning the Rangers on 01425 470721.
A Crossfire all-terrain manual wheelchair is also available (pre-booking recommended and £10 deposit required). This wheelchair is suitable for the dirt and gravel tracks around the park. It can be used by one person or with an assistant. If you are used to a more conventional wheelchair you will find it more likely to tip over (forwards or backwards) if your weight is in the wrong place.
Please contact the Rangers before booking if you would like advice on which would be most suitable for your use. Maximum weight 113kg / 17 stone.
Two ‘Tramper’ mobility scooters are also available to hire as part of the South West Countryside Mobility Scheme. Please see the Countryside Mobilty Scheme page for details of how to join and membership fees.
Fishing – A platform to enable people in wheelchairs to fish is located on the Moors Lake. Please note: at times of particularly high water, this platform may be submerged.
Moors Valley Railway – Seats on the railway carriages must be straddled. Staff are on hand to assist someone in and out of a railway carriage. Please speak to the railway direct to find out about the suitability of the carriages (01425 471415) but unfortunately the railway cannot accommodate a wheelchair. Steam locomotives emit smoke, steam and ash and also have loud whistles.
Go Ape Tree Top Adventures and Forest Segway – Whilst the courses are designed to be accessible to most people they do offer a degree of physical and mental challenge. For some persons with additional needs this may mean that additional equipment and/or levels of supervision will be required for safe participation. For others the risks of injury may still be too great despite taking such additional measures, preventing their use of the course. Please contact Go Ape for futher information (0845 6439215).
Cycle Hire – The cycle fleet includes one tandem and two wheelchair bikes (a bike with a built-in wheelchair on the front). Both are allocated on a first come first served basis (£10 deposit required).
A fleet of adaptive bikes, including hand powered bikes are avilable to use at Moors Valley during Accessible Cycling sessions on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Please see the events pages for more information.
Guided Walks and Events
Moors Valley has a full range of events throughout the year. Most can be adapted to meet indivdual requirements.
If you would like to attend one of our events but have concerns about accessibility, please get in touch so we can discuss how we can best accomodate your requirements.
GPS Tracker Service
We have a GPS personal alarm facility to help vulnerable visitors to enjoy the countryside with peace of mind.
The GPS tracker has an SOS button which once pressed sends an accurate location to a mobile phone at the Visitor Centre, which is used to deploy immediate emergency support. It can also be used to pin point a location for visitors who do not return to the Visitor Centre before a specified time.
The device is free to use, however a £10 cash deposit and ID are required. Please call the Rangers on 01425 470721 if you would like more information.
Mobile Phone Coverage
Free Wifi is available at the Visitor Centre. Mobile reception across the site varies between providers. Emergency calls can be made from the Visitor Centre – please ask the Rangers at the Information Point. The information below is intended as a guide and has been collated from each of the mobile providers online coverage search tools.
Vodaphone / TalkTalk: Good coverage at the Visitor Centre and across the Country Park but coverage drops off in the centre of the Forest
O2 / Tesco / GifGaff: Generally good coverage across the site
EE: Moderate outdoor coverage but weak or no indoor signal in the Visitor Centre
Virgin: Low to moderate call strength acros the whole site
Three: No coverage across most of the Park and Forest, with limited phone signal at the Visitor Centre
Our accessibility promise:
We are committed to inclusivity and work hard to provide a friendly, accessible environment for all our visitors and the widest possible access to our trails, buildings and events.
We promise to:
- Place access and inclusivity at the heart of our operation
- Do everything we can to remove barriers to participation
- Positively encourage feedback on how we can improve
- Work with individuals and organisations that can help us to be more accessible and inclusive
- Invest in access and inclusivity facilities, equipment and processes
- Regularly monitor our progress