Fairhaven Garden mobility scooter

Trevor ‘Tabs’ Taberham (80), volunteer Wildlife Warden at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, South Walsham has had his access throughout the garden greatly improved by the garden’s acquisition of a new mobility scooter.

The mobility scooter, one of a small ‘fleet’ of four scooters that visitors to the garden can borrow in return for a donation, is very important to Tabs as it means he can continue as a volunteer.

Tabs said: “Without the mobility scooter, I would no longer be working as Wildlife Warden at Fairhaven. Due to the onset of rheumatism in my hips, plus sciatica, both of which are very painful, I find it difficult to walk more than 25 metres without having to sit down. Now with the mobility scooter I can lead my Walk on the Wildside and Evening Birdsong guided tours and get to every corner of the garden in minutes. I can easily carry my buckets of bird food, my mini tool kit, small first aid kit, my two cameras and water bottle, most of which I would struggle to take with me, if I was on foot.”

“I can get to the bird hides with ease to do the feeding, visit parts of the garden that were too far to walk to and spend more time observing the wildlife. The scooter is also a very good ‘hide’. It is silent, doesn’t resemble a human in any way and allows me to get closer to my photographic subjects.”

Louise Rout, Manager, Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden said: “Tabs is a valued member of our team and I am so pleased that our new mobility scooter means that he can keep working with us, leading his popular guided tours and advising our gardeners on all conservation matters. He has masterminded our ongoing wildlife surveys, supplies fabulous wildlife photographs, monitors our wildlife both in the garden and out on the broad, replenishes bird feeders as required and keeps all staff up to date with wildlife news.”

Fairhaven Garden Mobility scooter

Tabs leads his Walk on the Wildside tours on the first Friday of the month at 9am and Evening Birdsong tours at 7pm on the third Wednesday of the month from May to the end of August. The tours are included in the garden entry charge (free to Fairhaven Garden members), but must be bookled in advance, t. 01603 270449, www.fairhavengarden.co.uk

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is at South Walsham, signposted off A47 at B1140 junction, half way between Norwich and Great Yarmouth.

The garden is open daily 10am to 5pm and on Wednesdays, until 9pm, from May to the end of August. Free entry to tearoom, provisions shop, gift shop and plant sales.

Garden entry charge is adult £6.85, concessions £6.60, children £3.95 and free to Fairhaven members and under 5s.

There is wheelchair access throughout the garden, including a Sensory Garden and an accessible boat for trips on the broad from April to October (additional charge). Visitors requiring special facilities are advised to telephone in advance, mobility scooters available.

Dogs are welcome on leads; small charge to cover poop scoop.