Following the success of the Local Offer and Short Breaks activities last summer, Manchester City Council again reached out to parents & carers to look at what could be added to their programme of activities for the spring term and Easter holidays.
Discussing together with the Manchester Parent Champions, a number of ideas came to mind. In another fantastic example of local services listening to parents and carers, the council organised a number of free sensory room sessions at Redbank House, which were bookable via the Local Offer team from the February half-term through the Easter break in April.
We invited families to share experiences their visit(s) and published a short survey, where we asked their and their children’s/ young people’s satisfaction of the visits.
An overwhelming majority of the feedback from families have been very positive, as reflected both through our survey and private/public messages that parents & carers shared. It was quite a revelation, as not too many of us knew about Redbank House prior to these sessions.
We had no idea Redbank House existed before the offer so it was greatly appreciated, we went 4 times and had use of both rooms, we preferred room 1 purely because of the space as I went with 3 children. My 12yr old autistic girl particularly enjoyed the waterbed, bubble tubes and fish wall 🙂
I think it’s a brilliant resource
Staff were friendly
Lovely environment, fabulous staff and nice to have an indoor space to play in during lockdown. Thanks
I always booked first session so no issues parking, but it looks as though parking near Redbank could be a nightmare at times.
Our son loved his visit – and the staff seemed very Covid aware, I felt reassured.
Thank you , we as a family really enjoyed our time there . The staff , and booking was so easy and amazing and keeping to the covid restrictions we felt at ease which reflected in the children all enjoying themselves . We can’t thank you enough .
Issues with booking process initially (could email or phone but then changed to phone only so the person with the diary could allocate slots). Arrival was easy, fibre optics weren’t working but otherwise everything was in working order (weren’t advised about the fibre optics on entering). Definitely more suited to kids with physical disabilities rather than mental health or under 5’s who would enjoy watching the lights, dancing etc. My lively 11, 9 and 5 years olds were bored very quickly and then spent most of the time diving into the large floor cushions, which they enjoyed but wasn’t particularly relaxing for the parents…Booking was easy this time, entry was quick and easy. Fibre optics were working and when I asked the staff member to change the music she did do quickly. We managed to find some games to play in this 2nd visit which stopped most of the large floor cushion diving. Again I think its more suited to those with physical disabilities or under 5’s as there isn’t enough to keep lively active boys entertained.
Here are some beautiful photos that parents and carers very kindly shared with us:
Much thanks to Manchester City Council’s Local Offer team for funding and booking the sessions on behalf of families, and for co-producing the whole project with parents and carers.
We would also like to thank these partners for their involvement:
- Manchester Parent Champions – planning, feedback gathering, video production