Whenever possible we try to make arrangements for guests with special requirements, and the following information is offered to assist with an assessment of suitability.
The nature of the site and building means that ‘The Retreat’ is unlikely to be suitable for those dependant on a wheelchair. Access from the roadway involves descending a total of eighteen outside steps. These have been rebuilt to modern accessibility standards (minimum tread width 38cm, 15 inches though most are 60cm, 24 inches; maximum rise 15cm, 6 inches), and have hand railing to assist guests who have restricted mobility. All steps have white edging, and at night this route is automatically lit. At the narrowest point the access is 64cm, 25 inches, wide. There are a further two steps up into ‘The Retreat’ and assistance is provided by a grab rail. Door security is by means of lock and key; all doors except the shower room have lever latches.
Inside there is one shallow step down (12cm, 4.5ins) from the entrance lobby into the sleeping and sitting areas. The kitchen and shower room are on the same floor level as the entrance lobby. A glow plug is provided to assist with access from the sleeping area to the shower and toilet at night. Two standard three-foot (90 cms) beds are provided and the bed heights are about 19inches (50 cms). Pillows and duvets are of synthetic hollow fibre, and linen is polycotton and all are therefore hypoallergenic.
The shower room and toilet is compact and may not be suitable for persons with severely restricted mobility. The door has recessed handles and folds open leaving an access of 58 cm, 23inches. There is one step up (9cm, 3.5ins) followed by the step into the tray (22cm, 8.5ins) to access the shower. The shower is controlled by rotating knobs and push button at about shoulder height. The toilet flush is operated by push buttons set into the wall. The hand basin tap is lever operated, as is the kitchen sink tap. Pull switches at approximately head height operate electric equipment in the shower room.
The kitchen has a conventional layout with base units and wall cupboards. The fridge and cooker are floor standing, and the grill is below the hob plate. Cooker controls are at worktop level. The switch for the extractor fan is above the cooker at approximately head height; all other sockets are above the work surface. The microwave oven stands on the work surface.
In the main areas light switches are at conventional height and operate all the lights; to switch individual wall lights on or off requires reaching up to the switches on the lights themselves; electric sockets are at about waist height.
Once outside, a level paved area leads to the sitting area with table and chairs; other areas of the garden are accessed via loose gravel, which is below the level of the paving. Use of the side garden gate is not recommended for those with mobility difficulties because of the uneven nature of the ground and steps.
One parking space is provided off street although there are no restrictions on street parking. The space is similar to that of a single domestic garage and the most convenient driver access is provided when the vehicle is reversed into the space.
The railway station is approximately a quarter mile from ‘The Retreat’ with an approximately hourly service both north and south and with several trains per day via the ‘Heart of Wales’ line. Access to the northbound platform is by footbridge or by a longer pavement route avoiding the footbridge. There is a regular bus service to Shrewsbury and Ludlow and places beyond from the town centre (about ½ mile) and most of the services are operated with low step vehicles.
From Easter till October there are shuttle buses onto the Long Mynd at weekends and bank holidays.
If your situation means that you are likely to have difficulty with any aspect of ‘The Retreat’ please let us know and we will do our best to answer any questions, provide further information and to meet any suggestions you may have for solutions.