A north-east community organisation is aiming to make its local beach more accessible to people with disabilities.
Belhelvie Community Trust is to begin raising funds for a Changing Places accessible toilet at the Sand Bothy in Balmedie.
The community trust already runs a scheme providing beach-friendly wheelchairs, allowing more families to have a day out at the beach together.
Now the group is aiming to raise £15,000 to allow even more people with disabilities and their families to make use of the facilities at Balmedie.
Aberdeenshire Council has pledged to provide half the funds needed – and efforts are under way to deliver the rest.
Community trust secretary Rosie Nicol said: “Toilet facilities are really important to people with disabilities. The current ones in Balmedie Country Park are no good if you’re disabled.
“We are working with Aberdeenshire Council to make the toilet block at the bothy bigger and more accessible.
“It is going to have an overhead hoist and an adult-sized changing table, which are really important for people with disabilities and their families.
“There is a real need for things like this. They often simply can’t go to places because there are just not the facilities.
“We are in the process of setting up a JustGiving page which we hope will help us reach the amount we need.
“The process of applying for funding is very complicated, so the more we can raise ourselves, the easier it is going to be for us to get these facilities in place. We are hopeful work will be able to start on the block next spring in time for the main summer season.”
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The bid for new facilities has been backed by the charity Promoting a More Inclusive Society (PAMIS), which supports people with disabilities and their families across Scotland.
Jenny Miller, chief executive for PAMIS, said: “We would be delighted with a Changing Places facility in Balmedie and it will open it up for so much more families.
“It is such a beautiful beach and we have had to use it a lot for Pony Axe S (a charity which organises horse-and-carriage rides on beaches) and we have to bring portable Changing Places for those who go along with Simon and Obama, the ponies.
“I think it will allow families to use the beach for longer and those from further away. It will be great for the Grampian area.
“We are so grateful to the Sand Bothy for this and their great attitude.”