Been a long time reader, and after talking to the very amazing Alison, thought I would give this blogging thing a bash.
I have Cerebral Palsy and use a wheelchair, as does my partner Anne.
You will find as you go along I have a sense of humour and a lively personality, but if I offend anyone, then it is completely unintended.
We went on holiday to Blackpool (the 2nd week of July 2011), and I thought I would give you all an insight into planning, getting to and enjoying the holiday, as well as giving a review of the hotel we stayed at.
We started planning our holiday in October last year.
The cost of some places was reasonble enough, but we, like many others have to take care into account.
Both me and Anne like to travel, so we first considered places like Egypt, Spain or France. Access wasn’t an issue, but each taking a carer with us scuppered it.
Effectively rather than going as a couple we would be paying for 4 people to go (paying for the carers travel plus their wages). that would cost us over £3,000.
For example a very reputable company charge £700 each for a Disneyland Paris ticket when a high street company charges at least £200 less!
But anyway, we settled on a fantastic hotel in Blackpool, The Bond, with care included for around £900 for the both of us. Bargin! (To avoid confusion, we only have 2 hours of care per day, so our care costs were quite low, about £200 for the week, if you need more, the price goes up.
Everything was paid for by May. The packing took all of 30 seconds – at least mine did, Annes took longer :P.
A trip to Liverpool to get nibbles for the journey and we were ready!
Got up on the morning of the holiday, the coach turned up promptly at 11am. Loaded in, the driver was very social and chatty. The journey took about two and a half hours with a diversion to Manchester to pick up another guest. We passed the time by reading Animal Farm, discussing the phone hacking scandal, and eating jelly babies!
After running to the loo (note to self-do not drink on coach, not wise), we dumped our bags and had lunch in the very pleasant bar area. Reasonble prices too, £5.50 for a big plate of scampi and chips, £2.50 for a baked potato with salad.
Now in holiday mode, we could attack the first trip of our holiday with oomph, a trip to Blackpool FC.
Getting a taxi was easy, and about 10-15mins after we rang, one turned up. This was the case throughout the holiday – brilliant.
When we got back, we were able to take a look at our room for the first time – slight hiccup occurred when we had to spend one night in a differnt room due to grab rails needing to be reinstalled after maintenance work.
Fortunately was resolved quickly the next day. Below are a selection of photos of the room:
After a good breakfast in the restaurant, we were ready to face our first day-shopping.
Blackpool Town Centre is nice and flat.
If you are in a wheelchair that actually works, you can get around easily. My wheelchair seems to have a mind of its own, and I wouldn’t say I stuggled, but it wasnt easy.
There are plenty of loos in Blackpool, however there is some distance between them, so be warned! An early birthday present of a big ice cream from Anne made the day complete.
My birthday dawned, the carer was, as always, bang on time. The Bond do organised trips, and we had taken up the oppotunity to go to the zoo.
We were to be disapointed however, not at Blackpool Zoo, which was flat and easy to get around(correction-easy to get around if one holds the map the right way round), but at the very limited time we had there.
We got there around 11.15am, and were told that the coach would return around 2.45pm.(What are we, Superman?) therefore we barely had time to get in, have lunch and see a turtle or two before heading back.
Maybe a better option would be, bearing in mind tea is not served till 5pm, to come and get us at 4.15, leaving at 9.30, thus giving us time to get around the place.
Monday saw us take a trip to the Sealife Centre and Madame Tousards. Great places to get around, staff were helpful, but again the lack of loos proved a problem. I ended up having to use my bottle to save having an accident!
So all in all a very enjoyable day!
Tuesday did not start well, with the shower rail falling down, but again, was sorted quickly and with no fuss by the maintance men.
We went to Blackpool Pleasure Beach, blowing money on games and arcades, good fun, if a little frustrating, but if you will excuse me, shite for wheelchairs!
It went up and down at random intervals, and these random landscaped water things, looked nice, but I managed to fall into one-the wheel just caught the edge, so be careful!
I wasnt hurt, a little wet and feeling stupid, but some good passers by had me the right way up and I had some chips to calm myself down.
Wednesday saw us check out Blackpool Tower, now, much of it is closed due to major refurishing work, but the ballroom and circus are still open.
We didnt get the chance to see the circus due to all the wheelchair tickets being sold out (Book as long in advance as you can). The ballroom was spectacular!
We spent Wednesday afternoon on the Central Pier, where we enjoyed yet more fish and chips andgot views of the sea. We would have liked to go on the beach, but from past experience the wheelchairs got stuck in the sand!
Thursday saw us start packing, but we decided to go to the North Pier to spend the last of our money and to enjoy an ice cream. We spent the evening enjoying, as we had all week, the excellent cabaret, good mix of songs!
Friday saw us back home by lunchtime, we spent the afternoon going through our souvenirs and photos. A fantastic holiday, rounded off with a meal and Harry Potter on Saturday. I returned home to Shropshire with a much heavier bag, and full of memories. Me and Anne are already in chats about our next holiday, The Channel Islands.
I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it. I will write more blogs for Pesky People as and when topics allow!
Comments welcome, Feedback please so I can write better articles in future!
Bye for now!