For 2023 we are running a small number of SEN Sessions in Santa’s Winter Wonderland for our young visitors who would benefit from a calmer visit.
We have worked with Naomi’s House and Jack’s Place to identify changes that can be made to make these sessions accessible, and as a thank you will donate 50% of ticket proceeds from all SEN Sessions booked to these amazing charities.
These sessions will have no flashing lights and the music on the animated band will be switched off to allow only gentle background music to be heard. There will be a smaller number of visitors in each 15 minute slot compared to the general admission, so it will be less crowded. One of our friendly elves can, if required, stay with your group through the whole experience to help ensure your child’s needs are met.
There will be an elf at the entrance to the Garden Centre to guide you to Santa’s Winter Wonderland should you need assistance. Additionally, an elf can also accompany you throughout the Winter Wonderland.
Please note there may still be flashing lights in the Garden Centre.
Sunday 10th December: 9.30am - 10am at Stewarts Abbey Garden Centre, PO15 5RB
Wednesday 13th December: 9am - 10am at Stewarts Abbey Garden Centre, PO15 5RB
Sunday 17th December: 9.30am - 10am at Stewarts Abbey Garden Centre, PO15 5RB
Sunday 3rd December: 10am – 11.30am at Stewarts Broomhill Garden Centre, BH21 7DF
Friday 8th December: 4.30pm - 5.30pm at Stewarts Broomhill Garden Centre, BH21 7DF
Friday 15th December: 4.30pm - 5.30pm at Stewarts Broomhill Garden Centre, BH21 7DF
Thursday 30th November: 6pm - 7.30pm at Stewarts Christchurch Garden Centre, BH23 4FL
Sunday 3rd December: 10am - 11am at Stewarts Christchurch Garden Centre, BH23 4FL
Tuesday 12th December: 10am - 11am at Stewarts Christchurch Garden Centre, BH23 4FL
To book in to one of our SEN Sessions please call or visit the centre you wish to book at. You cannot book these sessions online.
Stewarts Broomhill Garden Centre, God’s Blessing Lane, Broomhill, Dorset BH21 7DF Tel: 01202 882462
Stewarts Abbey Garden Centre, Mill Lane, Titchfield, Fareham, Hampshire, PO15 5RB Tel: 01329 842225
Stewarts Christchurch Garden centre, Lyndhurst Road, Christchurch, Dorset, BH23 4SA Tel: 01425 272244
When you make your booking please let us know of any special requirements that would help your visit run more smoothly.
We understand that certain wheelchairs can struggle with unlevel ground so have endeavoured to detail the flooring conditions below so you can be prepared.
Our carpark is flat but has some slopes in places. There are a number of disabled parking bays in front of the front door which are on the same level as the door. The carpark is tarmac, with a brick paved walkway outside the front door.
The front door is a double sliding door. Inside the entrance is the Christmas Department, with level vinyl flooring. A single sliding door opposite the front door leads to a short brick paved ramp* down to a concrete floor where the forest of real Christmas trees is located. There is a small dent (less than 1cm deep) where the flooring changes. This concrete continues round to the left and turns back to brick paving just outside the door to Santa’s Winter Wonderland.
*If the ramp is likely to cause an issue, an alternative route can be taken to the Santa’s Winter Wonderland entrance through our Garden Shop department, which is carpeted with carpet tiles, until double sliding doors which open onto brick paved floor at the start of Santa’s Winter Wonderland.
The brick paved flooring continues throughout Santa’s Winter Wonderland, until Santa’s Grotto at the end of the walkway which has a door mat which then turns into carpet.
Leaving Santa’s Grotto the carpet ends and brick paving begins again, with a very gentle slope down. This flooring continues through our outdoor plant area, or you can choose to enter our Coffee Shop. The Coffee Shop has vinyl flooring and can be accessed through a single door with an additional door that can be opened if required. Should you need more space, there is another entrance to the Coffee Shop from within the Garden Centre that is a wide, single sliding door, from brick paved flooring.
Our carpark is compacted gravel with a small number of disabled parking bays closest to the entrance. From the car park you cross a small tarmac road and enter through our wide gates on to tarmac. There may be a few bumps between the front gate and the entrance to the garden centre, but we have regular wheelchair visitors who don’t find it to be a problem.
The entrance is into a greenhouse which has concrete floor (a small bumps where the floor type changes), then there is a double push door into slab paving. Throughout the centre there are rubber mats that smooth out the most uneven areas. The slab paving continues to a wide open door which leads to the outside, the transition is poured concrete followed by a drainage grate. The flooring outside is tarmac which slopes up to a flat area outside the entrance to Santa’s Winter Wonderland.
Santa’s Winter Wonderland has artificial grass throughout, and may be uneven in places. From the Winter Walkway to Santa’s Grotto there is a short, artificial grass-covered ramp. Within Santa’s Grotto there is carpet. Leading out of Santa’s Grotto is a short artificial grass-covered ramp that leads to the photographer’s desk which is artificial grass with some bumps. A metal threshold strip precedes concrete drainage grate back to the flat area of poured concrete outside the Winter Wonderland Entrance. To return to the shop proceed back down the tarmac slope.
Our carpark is flat tarmac, but it does have some sunken dips in places and also in the block paving. There are some curbs going from the tarmac to block paving into the courtyard area outside the Entrance door. For the evening session, there will be lighting in the car park.
There are several disabled parking bays near the entrance.
The front entrance door is a double sliding door going onto a carpet mat and then onto a flat tiled floor. There will be printed footsteps to follow to the entrance of the grotto.
The walk to the grotto is flat all the way, going from tiled floor to vinyl wood floor in the Christmas area. (There is a tiny rubber lip between the two surfaces).
The doors to the plant area where Santa’s Winter Wonderland is situated are automatic double sliding doors onto block paving. In places there is a slight slant to the floor to allow for drainage. There are covered drainage channels in each greenhouse.
The entrance to Santa’s Winter Wonderland is through open double sliding doors and the walkway through the Winter Wonderland is all block paving leading up to a slightly rising wooden ramp into where Santa is. The grotto itself is carpeted and is large enough to turn wheelchairs or buggies.
The exit from Santa’s Winter Wonderland is through a wide wooden door down a wooden ramp to block paving. There is a rising curb back into the building to the photographer’s desk.
The selfie area next to the photographer’s desk is also block paving.
To get to the Coffee Shop or exit, follow the block paving back to the main shop area of vinyl wooden flooring. The Coffee Shop flooring is the same.
The way out of the centre is on vinyl flooring followed by tiles, the same as the entrance in. The exit doors are double sliding doors to the courtyard and car park.