Great Outdoors Access Guidelines

A guide for accessibility

Ireland is renowned for its natural beauty, incredible landscapes, and breathtaking coastlines. Given the nature and locations of the Irish landscape, which is often rugged and remote, accessing the great outdoors and engaging in outdoor pursuits can present many challenges, particularly for people who may have a range of disabilities.

Irish Wheelchair Association’s Sports Department in conjunction with Sport Ireland developed the concept of designing and delivering outdoor access guidelines that could be used by various organisations, that provide and manage facilities within the Great Outdoors. The Guidelines are funded by the Dormant Accounts funding stream 2017.


Rosemary Keogh

CEO, Irish Wheelchair Association.

John Treacy

CEO, Sport Ireland.

More about the guidelines

The Great Outdoors – A guide for accessibility aims to provide organisations and land managers with relevant guidance and information relating to accessible design, including, in some instances, the provision of on-site supports that can be provided in order to make their specific environments more available and accessible for people with a disability.

The guide can also act as a support for future service planning and in many instances can combine with an annual service plan on improving accessibility within the outdoor environment. By following these guidelines it is anticipated that there will be a significant increase in the opportunities for people with disabilities who wish to become involved and active in outdoor locations and activities. It is important to consider the needs and preferences of people who have a disability and consultation is required where change is being proposed.
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