A sensory adventure playground has now been installed at The Llewellyn School in Birchington.
The playground is accessible to children of all abilities and open to youngsters from across the Thanet community. It has wide ramps and a viewing platform with lights, texture and sounds aa well as a role play area with a farmyard theme. Wheelchair “racetracks” lead the way to all areas of the playground.
The project has come to fruition following a fundraiser launched last year.
The Llewellyn School opened at its Quex Park site in September 2019 following a huge fundraising effort and massive community support. It is headed by Sara Llewellyn, who set it up to provide education for her son Louie and other children in a similar situation after the closure of the Royal School for the Deaf in December 2015.
Initially based in Margate, the demand for places at Llewellyn meant the couple had to look for bigger premises. Anthony Curwen the managing director of Quex Park in Birchington, offered Sara a plot of land to build the school and planning permission was granted in February 2018.
The therapy and education centre for children with complex physical and mental health needs is supported by Louie’s Helping Hands – a small registered charity. Through grants and fundraising the charity helps to improve the lives and futures of children, aged two-16 living in Kent and the South East with multi-sensory impairments and physical difficulties. It provides life changing support for the whole family.
Now the school and charity have created the fantastic new playground which is designed by specialist and experienced contractors Timotay Playscape
A spokesperson for Louie’s Helping Hands said: “We are so thrilled our beautiful playground is finished.
“Thank you so much to everybody who has supported and donated to this project, we are so grateful. Our vision has been brought to life by Timotay Playscapes and we are so pleased with the outcome. It’s amazing.
“Being accessible and inclusive is something we feel so passionate about. All children should have access to outside spaces and be able to play.”
The team – made up of Thanet residents Sara Llewellyn, Tania Horn, Debbie Chapman and Angela Curwen – were last month honoured with The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, And they say there will be more projects coming up, adding: “In true Louie’s Helping Hands style we won’t be resting for long. Watch this space!”