We have many paths right along the foreshore to help people access the beach.
In addition to this, we also have beach access mats that sit on some of these paths to provide easy access for everyone.
These mats assist with crossing the soft sand to the hard sand. They are helpful for prams or people with mobility limitations,regardless of their age or ability. People using walking sticks, walkers or wheelchairs can use the mats to get safely on to the hard sand.
The mats are even useful for ageing dogs who can’t manage uneven sand. Access mats locations are chosen for many reasons including proximity to disability car parking and accessible toilets.
We also take into account things such as distance from soft sand to hard sand, the width of the path, sand movement, and perhaps most importantly how level the sand is under the path, because to be useful it needs to be relatively flat.
The beach access mats are still in the trial period while we consider public and staff feedback regarding the mats and assess the suitability of various locations. The path we have installed near the Palais will remain at that site.
Beach access mats are sometimes removed due to storms or tidal movements, or for maintenance. They are checked regularly by our foreshore maintenance crew to identify any issues.
Each year the beach mats are rolled up over winter and stored elsewhere to prevent damage.
We will monitor the changing environment where the rehabilitation of the dune at Semaphore has taken place and make a decision as to the best locations to roll out the mats ready for summer.