Chris Kamis wheeling his wheelchair by the side of a river. He's smiling and has two other people with him.

The Calderdale Project Update 01.06.2019

Well, just a few months into the Project and already lots has been happening. It’s becoming very clear that this is a bigger affair than Hebden was, with generally longer and more complex audits being conducted, leading to suggestions for more elaborate modifications. Hopefully it will be as successful as Hebden was, considering the momentum and enthusiasm that generated, taking on a whole life of it’s own.

So, first impressions, I’ve already been met with the usual encouraging, “get-up and go” attitude of everyone involved and been surprised by the great enterprise being displayed everywhere. Suppose I shouldn’t be surprised anymore – it’s clearly a local characteristic!

What about “highs” that stick in my mind?

I’ve lost my breath pushing miles around a gorgeous Nature Reserve – imagine that, you don’t often find a whole step-free Reserve that a wheelchair-user can manage, river walks, canal walks, ponds, kingfishers, herons – probably got a bit too excited! But then lost my breath again – this time with admiration – when I went to audit a church on top of a hill and found this absolute gem of a Baptist Church with curved pews, organ, stained glass; absolutely brilliant!

I’ve encountered a life-threatening path down to a vibrant Community Centre (no – I found an alternative route), been confused by a simple car park alongside the back of the building I was visiting, which then had a horrendous slope down to the pavement and then a longer even steeper push back up to the front door. But I’ve also sat in the sun admiring the cricket square at Walsden (cup of tea in hand), been fed huge quantities of biscuits – even tea and hot buttered toast on one occasion, and to top it all, enjoyed a curry in the sun talking to a volunteer gardener in the lovely garden at St Augustines – gorgeous surroundings and so many happy volunteers!

Not a bad job really.

In the pipeline there’s a visit to a camp site, a push around a lake, another chapel, a library – who knows what I’ll find – but I’ll report back in my next instalment.

Now looking forward to seeing many of the people I’ve already met again when we invite everyone to the training session we’re putting on soon – watch this space.

Until next time, see you,


Project (intrepid) Auditor