It was first time that Bexley Deaf parents/children group has organised an overseas project by providing a long weekend to France.
The travel was by Eurostar train and accommodation was at Hotel Cheyenne. The group comprised of hearing and deaf parents, and deaf children who all integrated together for this trip. Thirty-two adults and twenty-three children aged from 4 to 16 years old participated in the trip.
On the first morning at the Eurostar platform at Waterloo, the group, especially the children were looking forward to meeting and getting to know each other as we travelled by train. One carriage was full of our group there and the journey was smooth and rapid to Disneyland, Paris.
On arrival from the station, it was only few minute free ride by bus to the Hotel Cheyenne. It was reminiscent of the Wild West, a Wood-framed building in dark brown. In the timber-panelling hall, at the reception, we sorted out who would go to which rooms, then we left and walked with our luggage in the middle of streets with buildings everywhere like we might challenge the cowboys by drawing guns!
Later in what turned out to be a sunny afternoon, we went to the Theme Park and split into many small groups. There was a lot of people there and the rides and park were excellent with many cafes and bars to sample. On some occasions we bumped to each other and dispersed again. It was beautiful with a colourful atmosphere there, especially in the evening.
Next day we all met at breakfast to exchange more news about the previous day. Again we all went to spend more time at the two theme parks. Many things went on that were very interesting and fun with amazing rides.
On the third day some visited the Village Shopping Centre and some went back to the Theme Parks again before we finally terminated the day.
The hotel was very pleasant and provided comfortable rooms especially as they all had bunked beds and double bed in each room. The Timber panelling walls of dining room was massive with many varied foods to try with self-service. There were dark brown round tables and chairs and many wall mounted old fashion pictures of Wild West History.
Sadly we had to leave the hotel to catch a train back in the late evening to Waterloo. It was very exhausting and long couple of days for us, especially the children but still they wanted to stay a bit longer. We will treasure the good memories of the group which mingled together efficiently without intricacy or hassles. The result of the project was a great success for the children who increased the knowledge of new friends or idolised the role of sharing the responsible from the parents.
Bexley Deaf Club was very grateful of the £1000 donation that was given by Welling Roundtable. It would have been difficult to run the trip without it. Thank you!
On Saturday 14th May we all met at Hever Castle (quite local so we all made our own way there) for 10am. 14 people turned up, First we had a guided tour of the Castle, kindly interpreted by Karen Leahy (Pat Clark's daughter), this was interesting and informative. Then we spent the rest of the day enjoying the caste's luxorious grounds, exploring the maze, getting wet in the water maze and of course … (the men and boys) playing football. We ended up in the pub just outside the castle for drinks before going home. We were lucky to have such fine weather and would like to thank Karen Leahy for intepreting the tour and of course, Alan Paul for organising the day.
On Saturday 12th November 2005, 36 players enjoyed the night out at Mega 10 Pin bowling in Bexleyheath and also some who are not playing join us at the bar for socialise. It was lovely evening and the atmosphere was good till late night.