“Disability isn’t always visible”
This project was launched by the Friends of the Trans Pennine Trail following a donation from the legacy of Pat and Bryan Allison. Pat and Bryan’s story has helped our Partners right across the Trans Pennine Trail network to see how changes can make the route more accessible. It is thanks to this kind donation we have been able to create an exemplar route at Torside which has attracted additional funding to enable the project to grow and provide a whole range of improvements for all visitors.
Still to Come!
Over the next few months there will be further additions to the Longdendale Access Project site including surfacing and vegetation improvement works. Updates of these works will be posted here.
We also hope that we will continue to be able to work alongside Peak District National Park to look at how access can be improved either side of the Reaps crossing – something that we never thought would be possible when we first started!
Useful Information and Links
Post code – SK13 1JF
Ordnance Survey Grid Reference – SK 0686 9832
What.3.Words – flagpole.trains.guests
Miles Without Stiles – https://www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/visiting/miles-without-stiles/torside
Message from the Allison Family
Our parents, Pat and Bryan Allison, always loved the outdoors. They met in Sheffield, married and had two daughters. As a family we lived on the edge of the Peak District, enjoying walks on moors and railway trails.
Like many ordinary families, our family experienced illness and disability. In our case, it was when Mum developed Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
As Mum’s MS developed Mum and Dad became more aware of the challenges to access. Dad would research routes and come home with notes about features which could be improved to aid accessibility. For example, a simple adjustment to a stile by lowering the step and adding a hand post can make a big difference to someone who has difficulty with walking but isn’t wheelchair bound.
They became as passionate about accessibility as they had always been about the outdoors.
We know Mum and Dad would have been delighted with the way in which their initial legacy developed. Further funding from others has far outstripped the original legacy and many additional organisations have become involved. This ‘snowball effect’ has not only created the Longdendale Access Project we now have; it has also resulted in plans for similar developments elsewhere! Our parents would have been impressed by the teamwork and enthusiasm of so many people and organisations as well as by the results of the project itself.
As Pat and Bryan’s daughters, we would like to thank all those who have made this project possible. There are far too many organisations and individuals to name but we are grateful to each and every person who has so freely given their time, ideas, funding and enthusiasm.
We hope that the information via this website helps people to make their own decisions about which routes suit their individual needs for an enjoyable visit to the Trans Pennine Trail.
Longdendale Access Project Official Opening – Blog Post
28th of July 2021 – Torside visitor centre, Longdendale
It was wonderful to finally see the official opening of the LAP project. This has been a project that has brought together so many stakeholders and grown into something magical.
Environmentalist and broadcaster Chris Baines, Chair of the independent Stakeholder Advisory Group for National Grid’s Visual Impact Provision project very kindly officially opened the route. Chris is very familiar with the area and praised the family for making such a wonderful legacy gesture and the partners involved for bringing it into reality.
Mother Nature certainly threw all she could at us during the day – from wonderful sunshine to torrential rain and thunder and lightening but even this couldn’t dampen our spirits from making this into an event to celebrate how small changes can make such a difference to people who have disabilities.
This project has spearheaded other conversations across the Trail partnership to truly look at how improvements to accessibility need to be made.
- National Grid supporting landscape improvements in the Longdendale Valley
- Accessible Peak District – Annual Report 2019
- Trans Pennine Trail Facebook Page Post
- Glossop Chronicle – “More to discover on Improved Trans Pennine Trail”