Reid Davit Crane Lifts Personnel at Outdoor Activity Centre

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A Reid Lifting davit crane makes it possible for disabled people to participate in watersports and other activities at Calvert Trust Kielder, a specialist site for outdoor experiences, in Kielder Water & Forest Park, Northumberland, UK.

The 150kg capacity T-Davit was installed on a jetty for the trust in the spring and has performed successfully throughout the centre’s busy summer months.

The lightweight, aluminium davit, known for its portability in other applications, is permanently fixed to the wharf by a special attachment, also manufactured by Reid. It works in tandem with a Voyager portable hoist, rated at the same capacity for personnel lifting.

Calvert Trust Kielder had previously used an Oxford Dipper hoist, commonly used at swimming pools, therapy centres, and quayside locations. However, at the end of its five-year lifespan, a longer-term solution was desired. Pete Coulson, head of activities, explained that a sister facility in the Lake District—a third Calvert location is in Exmoor—was already using a Reid system and suggested it to their colleagues in the northeast.

Coulson said: “We invested a lot of money in a section of the jetty that could support a personnel lifting device. The previous system worked efficiently but the relatively short lifespan steered us towards the Reid solution. Their team were extremely helpful in listening to what we wanted and were able to manufacture a specialist bracket that allowed us to fit the davit to our jetty, which made the option even more viable.”

The davit is used almost on a daily basis to allow people with varying disabilities to take part in sailing and canoeing sessions. Two attachments on the winch, which is removed every evening, are connected to a special harness that holds visitors securely at four points on their shoulders and legs; many will have accessed the wharf in a wheelchair. The hoist slides along the davit arm as personnel are lifted from the jetty onto watercraft and vice versa.

Coulson added: “Calvert Trust Kielder is respected globally as a leading provider of outdoor experiences for disabled people. Our disabled guests, their friends, and families experience the same emotions and levels of participation as any other guest inside our safe, inclusive, uniquely challenging facility. A key component to delivering that access to waterborne activities is Reid’s T-Davit; we’ve been very pleased with the addition to our jetty and the memories it has helped to facilitate.”

Nick Battersby, managing director at Reid, said: “Pete and his colleagues do a fantastic job of providing widespread accessibility to a variety of activities and we’re pleased to play a small part in getting visitors safely in and out of canoes and sailing boats. The application also serves as another example of the versatility of our T-Davit range and other lightweight lifting solutions.”

Additional activities made available by Calvert Trust Kielder include archery, bushcraft, climbing and abseiling, high ropes, orienteering, and stargazing.

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