There are lots and lots of fun things to do for disabled children and children with special needs in Brighton and Hove and beyond. This page tells you where to find out more about leisure options for kids with special needs.
So whether you’re looking for something to do as a family, searching for a suitable sport, hunting for the right class, planning a holiday, looking for child care or a local play scheme, or looking out for opportunities for your child to socialise – it’s often just a question of knowing where to look.
Amaze fact sheet
Start with the Amaze Fun Stuff Guide to leisure 2017 [pdf 1.3mb]. It’s packed with stuff – from support groups like Brighton Pebbles, to drama classes, youth clubs and sports clubs – and it’s updated each year. Call the Amaze helpline for a copy, or print it off from our web site. If you can’t find what you want there, call the helpline and we can look into more options for you. Our web site’s also a rich source of information: have a look at our events listings.
Brighton & Hove Council’s Family Information Service (FIS) has loads of information on childcare and play schemes and on children’s services across the city. FIS publishes details of school holiday activities throughout the year, including its ‘Summer Fun’ booklet, which covers the summer holidays. Summer Fun can be downloaded from the council website.
ABC Magazine covers Sussex and includes lots of information on things to do and places to visit for parents of babies and young children. It’s free and you can find it in places like libraries, children’s centres and doctors’ surgeries.
Sports and physical activities
If you’re looking for a local sports club, the Council’s Sports Development Team and the local NHS has a web site that lists more than 400 local clubs and groups – Active for Life. There’s also an Active for Life directory that’s published once a year. Look out for a copy in your local library or leisure centre.
If your child needs to use a wheelchair, you’ll need to know whether places are accessible.
The Fed’s online ‘Accessible City Guide’ is a good place to start. It covers a wide range of attractions, public buildings, local transport, parks, restaurants, sports facilities and more. Accessibility in the city has improved a lot in recent years and even the beach, for years a no-no for wheelchairs, is more accessible. There’s an accessible walkway for wheelchairs in front of the lifeguard station near King Alfred Leisure Centre car park and you can book beach wheelchairs from the Seafront Office on 01273 292716. The Council web site also has loads of information on accessibility in public facilities like parks.
If you’re web-savvy, it’s worth searching online for what you’re looking for. Visit www.childfriendlybrighton.co.uk and www.kidsinbrighton.co.uk for some ideas – but be aware that content can go out of date quickly, so make sure you check details before you start making firm plans.
Try the library
Your local library has lots of information on things to do in Brighton & Hove, as well as a full programme of regular children’s activities. You’ll also find sensory books called ‘bag books’ in Jubilee Library; audio books and children’s CDs and DVDs in most libraries; and a toy library in Whitehawk Library. Pop into your local library to find out more.
The Compass Card
Run by Amaze on behalf of Brighton & Hove Children’s Services, the Compass Card is a free leisure incentive card for children with significant special needs who are registered on The Compass database. The Compass Card provides discounts and special offers at leisure outlets and public facilities across the city for kids aged 0 to 24 – and it’s free! Find out more about the benefits and how you can apply on our Compass pages.