Mateo Sanderson on board MV Swift

Welcome on board Mateo!

Published: 1st September 2022
Categories: Media Release

Charity fundraiser and accessibility champion Mateo Sanderson has given Windermere Lake Cruises’ most modern vessel the thumbs up after testing out its range of accessibility features.

Mateo, who is also a presenter and researcher on Lancaster-based Beyond Radio, took a trip on the 300-seater vessel to see how it performed for passengers in wheelchairs and with a disability – and says it has earned top marks.

Mateo starting his journey with step-free access from pier to boat

“I would like to start by saying that all the staff who work for Windermere Lake Cruises are always amazing, extremely kind and helpful to anybody who needs accessible support,” says Mateo.

“Having had a good look around I can tell you that MV Swift is extremely accessible for absolutely anybody.

“It doesn’t matter if the weather is wet or dry, you can explore the lower deck inside and out and the staff onboard are helpful and kind and will answer any questions you might have!”

Mateo is his wheelchair can access inner seating and outdoor viewing decks via a wheelchair lift

MV Swift will be an important resource for Mateo, who’s from Lancaster, as he has just become the newest holder of a Windermere Lake Cruises’ Annual Pass which offers unlimited travel throughout the year on all the company’s daily scheduled cruises.

MV Swift officially came into service on October 25, 2020 and is the biggest boat to be launched onto England’s longest lake in 80 years.

She was specially designed with accessibility in mind – to make sure passengers with disabilities could access the waters of Windermere and enjoy the stunning Lakeland scenery in comfort.

Mateo on the outer decks and MV Swift isn open water

Sailing from Ambleside, Bowness and Lakeside, the vessel offers step-free access to both inner and out decks via an onboard lift. She also has an accessible toilet which is step free, oversized and wheelchair friendly.

Mateo hosts "The Beyond Mateo Show" and carries out research for the local radio station Beyond Radio to help inform listeners and enable people in wheelchairs and with a disability to access attractions across Lancashire and South Cumbria. He’s well known in the area having established a charity fund raising business during the pandemic selling PPE and donating the profits to two local causes dear to him - Beaumont College and St John’s Hospice in Lancaster.

James Ventham, from Windermere Lake Cruises, says: “We were delighted to welcome Mateo onboard and let him try out all the facilities MV Swift offers. We purchased the vessel to improve accessibility to Windermere and hope it makes the Lake District available to a diverse range of visitors.”

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