The sun was shining this morning which was a surprise after rain had been predicted. There is something about an unexpected fine day, a bonus day in my eyes that makes me want to make the most of it. After filling the line with washing (taking advantage of that sunshine in more than one way) we decided to head to Collaroy Beach for a picnic. We got off to a rocky start with the fish shop being closed for renovations then as we walked back to the beach with our hamburgers, the showers originally predicted arrived, dampening my idea of sitting out on the picnic rug looking out to the ocean. Instead it was lunch in the car with me twisting around to pass BJ his food and drink. Not what I pictured for our picnic but fortunately it was a passing shower and we were able to play card games and a very competitive game of soccer.
COLLAROY ALL ABILITIES PLAYGROUND
Since our last visit the playground has been rebuilt and Warringah Council have continued to show their commitment to inclusive activities for their residents and visitors. The playground is large and has a variety of playground equipment.
The Liberty Swing (wheelchair swing) is lined up beside the variety of swings they have available. The most popular being a reclining hammock style of swing. It is a shame these don’t have a harness to make them safer for children with special needs but some children may still enjoy them and there is of course the Liberty Swing.
There is a water pump which AJ commented was “easier than most to use”. Many are quite stiff and require good hand function and strength to operate. BJ could manage it easily and I think that was very satisfying by the grin on his face.
The distortion mirrors are always fun and had BJ particularly curious as to where his reflection had disappeared.
The playground has a mixture of sculptures, climbing equipment and musical instruments to ensure that children are stimulated in many different ways and that there is something for everyone.
The carousel, which is wheelchair accessible, was not working on our visit but for the purposes of illustration I have included a photo of a similar carousel from Luke’s Place Corrimal (see above). This is a popular piece of equipment in any inclusive playground. A combination of seats, standing room and spaces for wheelchairs allow children to play side-by-side.
COLLAROY BEACH ACCESS – BEACH WHEELCHAIR
We have used the FreeWheeler beach wheelchairs at Collaroy Beach on many occasions. There are two FreeWheeler beach wheelchairs available to use here. When the beach is patrolled the life guards will get the chairs for you but outside of hours you can arrange to loan the chair through Warringah Council by phoning 9942 2560. For more information about borrowing the FreeWheeler for an extended period of time (say, during a holiday to Sydney) check the council website.
COLLAROY OCEAN POOL ACCESS
Collaroy also has an ocean pool with ramp access. There is a pool wheelchair which can be borrowed from the life guards at the beach. It does look to have seen better days but for someone who can sit well it would simply provide a means to get into the pool.
The recent addition of an adult-size change facility with hoist at Collaroy Beach will hopefully help those who need it have a carefree day when visiting the Northern Beaches. The MLAK key-locked facility faces the beach and is in the Life-Saving Club building. The bathroom facility has a height adjustable shower head with flip-down shower seat as well as grab rails throughout. Please note, you need to have your own sling to use with the hoist.
The council carpark adjacent to the beach and playground has eight disabled parking spaces.
There are covered picnic tables dotted around the park and gas bbqs. The park seems very popular for children’s birthday parties so I would advise taking a picnic rug or chairs in case all the picnic tables are taken.
This is a fabulous one-stop accessible picnic spot with the beach, playground and facilities to ensure everyone has a good day.
Do you know of other parks like this one we should visit? We’d love to hear about them.
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