Arundel and South Downs MP Nick Herbert waved a chequered flag to start the races at the opening of a new kart track at Lodge Hill, near Pulborough on Saturday (19 October).
The newly rebuilt kart track and three new vehicles called ‘Terrain Hoppers’, designed for children with disabilities, is a project that was funded through West Sussex County Council Short Breaks. The new vehicles will give children and young people with mobility difficulties the ability to enjoy the thrill of the race on the new track.
Mr Herbert was joined by children, parents and carers for the grand opening event.
Lodge Hill is an outdoor education centre funded through a charitable trust.
It is set in a secluded 32 acre woodland site in the middle of the South Downs National Park near Pulborough.
More than 28,000 children and adults visit each year and make use of their extensive range of outdoor activities and educational facilities, supported by a team of highly trained staff.
Lodge Hill aims to provide adventure, challenge and personal development for young people.
Over the last few years the Trust has focused on increasing and improving facilities for those with disabilities to ensure the site can be made as inclusive as possible.
The Trust is a not for profit organisation which is able to subsidise learning opportunities through a range of compatible commercial activities including residential stays, adult education, meeting room hire, team building and other training.
Their Bursaries provide those young people who are facing the greatest challenges with the opportunity to learn about themselves and others in a special environment.
West Sussex County Council provides respite care for the carers and families of disabled children and young people through their Short Breaks provision.
A short break can be anything from an activity session to a residential stay at a specialist centre.
WSCC Short Breaks also provide grants to voluntary and statutory organisations to set up new projects and activities.
Lisa May, CEO of Lodge Hill Trust said: “The Trustees and Lodge Hill Team are delighted with the WSCC Short Breaks funding that enabled us to refurbish the kart track and purchase the all terrain vehicles, which will enhance the activities we offer, particularly to those with disabilities. We are also thankful to Nick Herbert MP for officially opening the track & waving the flag for the first race”
Nick Herbert MP said: “It was a huge pleasure to be invited to open the new kart track and to see how much enjoyment it will bring. Lodge Hill is a fantastic resource for young people, and West Sussex County Council’s Short Breaks programme does a great job in enabling families with disabled children to take a break together.”