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Accessibility

We love to welcome all visitors to the Heights, but due to the nature of the site not all areas are accessible. Please read the information below before planning your visit.

Please take a look at our Accessibility Map which gives further detail on the gradient of the slopes around the site, the accessible alternatives and more information to help you plan your visit.

Click here to download the Accessibility Map 

Cable Cars

A visit to the Heights of Abraham is an exciting day out, but may provide an unusual environment for you and your friends/family, especially when boarding the cable car. Here are our top tips for you to ensure you are prepared for your visit.

  1. The cable cars are on a continuous driven loop, of which, only stops for disabled customers or when there is a safety risk presented. The maximum size for wheelchairs and pushchairs is 105cm x 60cm.

  2. The cable cars significantly slow down when in the station to allow you to board safely.

  3. There is a small step up into, or down out of, the cable cars. We can place a ramp for those in a wheelchair. The cable car may sway slightly as you step on, but this is nothing to worry about.

  4. The cabin roofline is low, and requires visitors to use care when boarding and disembarking. Our stewards will also remind you to watch your head as you step in and out. 

  5. We highly recommend collapsing all pushchairs or similar prior to entering either of the stations so that you are ready to board the cable car. If you are unable to collapse your pushchair, please speak with the cable car team who will be happy to help.

Wheelchair Users & Reduced Mobility

We do not recommend you bring a mobility scooter, as they are unsuitable on our steep terrain.

By its very nature, the Heights of Abraham is a steep, high hillside estate first opened to the public in 1787 when little thought was given to wheelchair users and accessibility.

Please read our accessibility statement before you visit. The Heights of Abraham Accessibility Statement 2024

There is a very steep slope up to the ticket office and cable car base station, and other steep gradients around the estate. The buildings on site are all accessible. The accessibility map gives a good idea of where those with reduced mobility can visit and what facilities and buildings are accessible- so we encourage you take a look before visiting.

We do not have wheelchairs to hire.

We make every effort to ensure that as many areas as possible are accessible to all visitors, but please be aware that due to the natural gradient of the site and natural formation of the caverns, certain areas of the estate are inaccessible to wheelchairs and people with reduced mobility. Our concession and carer ticket is a discounted rate to reflect the limited areas you can visit. 

Hearing & Other Aids

If you are deaf or partially deaf and wish to go on a guided cavern tour, we recommend you shine a torch on the person you've visited with who can sign the tour for you. If this is not possible we are able to provide you a written guide of the cavern to read while our tour guide gives the same presentation to the rest of the tour group. Please ask the cavern guide if this is something you'd like to do.

If you are visually impaired we do not recommend you go into the caverns due to the uneven nature of the underground floors and ceilings. There is a short video of the Masson Cavern tour playing in the Masson Pavilion, that gives information on lead mining, geology and social history, which you are welcome to enjoy. 

Our self-guided audio tour is played through your mobile phone. There is also the option of reading the transcript under each tour if you are hard of hearing. 

Dogs

Dogs are welcome on the cable cars, inside the cafe, the exhibition buildings, shops, and throughout the landscaped grounds, as long as they are kept on a lead. Water bowls provided. Unfortunately. for safety reasons dogs are not allowed inside the restaurant and underground caverns. For more information about where you can take your dog at the Heights, please click here. 

Guide dogs and assistance dogs are allowed into the caverns, however the surface of the cavern steps is not comfortable on their feet. If you do wish to take your guide dog underground, please speak to your cavern guide first.

Car Parking

All car parking is provided by the Derbyshire Dales District Council. The nearest is the railway station car park in Matlock Bath which is a 400m riverside walk from the Cable Car Base Station. Blue Badge holders do need to purchase a parking ticket. 

At the Summit

Once at the summit there is limited access, due to the very steep natural terrain at the Heights; however, there is wheelchair access to all buildings with the exception of the Victoria Prospect Tower. The Accessibility Map gives detail on which buildings are accessible and how to access them. 

Natural Caverns

The natural formation of the caverns is such that they are unfortunately not suitable for people with walking difficulties, wheelchairs or the visually impaired; however, there is access to watch a film show in the Masson Pavilion which shows you what life was like for the miners all those years ago, and takes you on a visual and audio tour of the cave. It is just what your friends underground will experience, but they have to climb 175 steps! There is also a hearing loop here too.

Due to the nature of the terrain, pathways down to the Great Rutland Cavern are very steep and are not suitable for wheelchairs or people with walking difficulties.

If you do not have a mobility disability but have hearing disabilities please advise your guide who will supply a written safety briefing and script of the tours. Scripts of the Cavern Tours are available in large and regular print on request.

Pushchairs and Larger Items

We highly recommend collapsing all pushchairs or similar prior to entering either of the stations so that you are ready to board the cable car. If you are unable to collapse your items or are struggling, please speak with the cable car team who will be happy to help with further instruction. 

Please note, the cable cars do not stop in the station unless the safety of the customer is at risk. The cable cars slow down considerably for you to board safely. 

You cannot take pushchairs into the caverns due to the steps and bumpy terrain. There are safe sheltered areas for you to store your pushchair as you go underground. Please ask a cavern guide for advice. 

Autism

The Heights can get busy at peak times. We recommend if you are visiting with an autistic person, to plan your visit on a quieter day if possible. If this is not possible, a visit in the afternoon is recommended as this is when the site quietens down.

If you or the person you are visiting with is unable to queue for the cable cars, our system is as follows: one member of the party joins the queue with the other visitors whilst the autistic person and any other guests take a walk nearby, once the person in the queue nears the front, they can call you back to join them on the cable car.

We recommend you bring ear defenders if you or the autistic person is sensitive to noise, as the cable car station is a fairly noisy area. There is also sometimes a queue for the cavern tours. In this instance, please speak to our cavern guides regarding any additional needs and we will discreetly hold a place in the queue for you and your party. 

Please also be aware of sensory changes in the caverns- light changes, temperature changes, noise changes. There are also a large set of upward steps to climb too. Please listen to the safety brief that the cavern guide gives at the beginning of the tour to ensure that the tour is suitable for your needs.

FREE CARER ADMISSION - Terms and conditions

We offer a two for one ticket for disabled guests and their carer. Please bring either a DLA letter, a PIP letter, an Access Card or official Carers ID Card with you, and show it to the ticket office on arrival to validate the discounted offer. Unfortunately we cannot accept a Blue Badge. 

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If you are concerned about any aspect of your visit to the Heights of Abraham, please get in touch and we will happily discuss your day with you. Please email office@heightsofabraham.com or phone 01629 582365.