Accessibility on the Tablelands

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Sitting in the stunning landscapes of the Atherton Tablelands, Lake Tinaroo Holiday has been transforming over the past five years.

Since current director Lachlan Farquharson took over as Directory in 2019, there has been a concerted effort to increase the park’s accessibility options.

Mr Farquharson indicated two strong reasons for this: there has been an increase in demand for accessibility options as the population of holidayers ages and an ethics-based desire to make his park more inclusive.

“We saw that people who were in the aging and disability markets didn’t have a lot of places to go,” he said.

“We sat down to discuss who we wanted our park to look like and we discovered that a lot of the infrastructure needed for people with disabilities were beneficial to a lot of elderly travellers.

“So before we built our new villas and new entertainment precinct which has a new pool and splash pad, we looked to work out how everybody can enjoy the same activities.”

Mr Farquharson said he and his business partner would put themselves into the shoes of their patrons when making the new designs.

“Imagine if you had a kid who was in a wheelchair, what would that feel like?” he asked.

“It would be a shame if they couldn’t partake in the fun activities or were forced to stay in a separate cabin from their family.”

For parks looking to begin their journey in implementing more accessibility, Mr Farquharson offers a simple mantra.

“It’s progress; not perfection,” he laughed out.

“For anyone thinking they’re going to make it perfect straight away, they’re a little bit crazy; and they’re probably going to struggle to get anything done.

“We just look at everything we’re doing and just add a little bit extra to make it a little bit more accessible.

“For example, we might be putting in a new concrete slab, and when we’re doing that, we might put in a wheelchair ramp on the side.”

Many parks are working toward improving accessibility for all holidayers. This has been made possible by holidayers who have asked for change and by the park owners willing to give it a crack.