Disabled Access Day – Saturday 11th March 2017

BLS Evening Session

We’re supporting DISABLED ACCESS DAY on Saturday 11th March by hosting a Festival of the Sea event which will incorporate an array of on-the-water and onshore activities.  The event will be held from 10am – 2pm at Carrickfergus Waterfront and activities will include:

  • Excursions onto Belfast Lough aboard some of our specially adapted power and sailing boats.
  • Sea Rover has a drop-down bow which enables wheel chair users with limited mobility to remain in their wheelchairs, to access the boat via the ramp and get out on the water – and even get a turn on the helm to drive the motor boat.
  • The Hansa keelboats incorporate a straightforward steering mechanism and are safe and colourful sailing boats.  We have a quayside hoist that enables individuals with mobility issues to be hoisted into the boats.
  • Rosy is a safe fun motor boat and everyone gets a turn on the tiller.
  • Just outside the marina is home to a large friendly colony of seals who regularly swim alongside our boats; alternatively they enjoy preening themselves and waving from their drying out rocks which are close at hand.  Tide dependent of course!


Disability Awareness Training

To raise disability awareness among younger people, we have invited a group of Scouts and members of Carrickfergus Sea Cadets to the event who will benefit from disability awareness training, learning how to interact and assist people with a broad range of disabilities.

This will include:

  • Practical learning by assisting some of our disabled volunteers onto the quayside.
  • Manual handling training using our hoist to assist our members into the boats.


There will be a BBQ at the end of the day for volunteers and participants.

We hope to encourage more people with disabilities to participate in our activities, and more volunteers to assist in the delivery of our services and activities.

Belfast Lough Sailability welcomes everyone to our Disabled Access Day and Festival of the Sea, irrespective of disability, ability or age.  We have something for everyone.

Please check our Facebook and Twitter for more news and updates.

(Pic: Christine Harper – a balmy summer 2016 Wednesday Evening Open Session)