Lakeland council unveils plans for £50k fund to be invested in Changing Places facilities

Closomat Changing Places facility at Moto motorway service

A £50,000 fund could be invested in installing specialist changing facilities for people with disabilities in South Lakeland.

Members of South Lakeland District Council cabinet heard how children with disabilities have to be changed in inappropriate places because of a shortage of proper facilities.

Leader, Councillor Giles Archibald, said: “A teaching assistant told me how children with disabilities are changed on the floor of public toilets or in the back of a minibus, with staff protecting their privacy as best they can.

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“Clearly we have to do something about this. We want people with additional needs and disabilities to be able to enjoy the area to the maximum and that means ensuring they have proper changing facilities.”

Under the new proposals local communities would be invited to bid for the funding to create or improve their existing disabled changing facilities.

The money would be used to purchase specialist mobility equipment such as ceiling hoists, changing benches, WCs and other adjustable items.

Cllr Archibald added: “We already know from the success of our Locally Important Projects funding, where communities bid for grants to help finance neighbourhood schemes, that seed funding can help to kick start initiatives and attract more funding.

“Similarly, this £50,000 council fund would enable local communities to bid for money to improve their disabled toilets and changing facilities.

“Helping community groups, clubs and organisations such as local town and parish councils to put in place proper facilities is something which I’m sure everybody would want to see,” added Cllr Archibald.

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