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Tilgate Park awarded prestigious Travellers’ Choice award



Councillor Chris Mullins (centre front) celebrates with Tilgate Park staff.

Crawley’s beautiful Tilgate Park has been named in the top 10 per cent of attractions worldwide by TripAdvisor.

The travel review website and app has awarded Tilgate Park with a 2021 Travellers’ Choice Award.

Set in 400 acres, its natural landscape boasts ancient woodland, lakes, gardens and lawns alongside the Lakeside Café, Tilgate Nature Centre, Tilgate Forest Golf Centre, the Walled Garden Café, Go Ape treetop adventures and a segway trail, lake activities with Tilgate Park Watersports Centre and the Smith & Western restaurant.

TripAdvisor said: “The Travellers’ Choice Award celebrates attractions that consistently deliver fantastic experiences to travellers around the globe. Winners like you earned positive reviews and ratings over the past year.

“In this particularly challenging year, you stood out by providing great service and experiences to your guests. Thank you, and congratulations again on your well-deserved win.”

This isn’t the first time that Tilgate Park has received a high honour from TripAdvisor. In 2019, the park was inducted into the Hall of Fame after receiving TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence for the fifth year running.

Cabinet member for Wellbeing, Councillor Chris Mullins, said:

“Tilgate Park is a wonderful place for a day out, with various attractions providing something for all of the family.

“This latest award is yet more recognition of the hard work the team put into making the park a great place for residents and visitors to enjoy.”

For more information about Tilgate Park, visit


Crawley boy receives pioneering kit to help with his disabilities



Eleven-year-old Theakston Lee-Watson is among the first recipients of innovative new equipment to provide disabled children with sensory activities in their own home.

Theakston, from Crawley in Sussex, received the equipment from Caudwell Children as part of a UK-first charity campaign to deliver sensory equipment and support to disabled children across the country.

The sensory pack will provide a range of therapeutic benefits for Theakston, who has autism and sensory processing disorder, helping him regulate his emotions and develop his motor skills. 

Theakston’s mum, Kitty Lee-Watson, has already noticed the benefits the equipment brings.

Kitty said:

“He has a lot of anxiety at the moment, I now have the sensory pack out on his bedroom floor so when he has a meltdown it’s easy to guide him to something or distract him. This has been a real help.

“Theakston’s favourite part of the Get Sensory pack is the Fibre Optic Light as it’s both visual and tactile. He likes touching the fibres.”

Caudwell Children has pledged to provide thousands of families with essential sensory equipment during the Covid-19 pandemic – with each family receiving a pack of appropriate and safe toys to support children living with a wide range of disabilities. 

Trudi Beswick, CEO of Caudwell Children, said:

“Our Get Sensory Packs are designed to support children who are likely to benefit from sensory resources – it’s so encouraging to hear that Theakston is enjoying using the equipment and his family can see the benefits already.”

“We’ve committed to provide thousands of families with a pack, because we know it’s difficult to access resources at the moment.

“To deliver on that we’re now calling for anyone who can to make a difference to the life of a disabled child by donating to our Get Sensory Packs campaign – you can make a life-changing difference from just £5.”

Caudwell Children launched its Get Sensory Packs campaign following consultation with parents to find the most appropriate and safe sensory items – selected by the charity’s Occupational Therapists.

The packs include:

  • A Liquid Cell Timer,
  • Scented Bubbles,
  • A BoBo Massager,
  • Sissle Brush,
  • 4 Ball Massager,
  • Weighted Cushion,
  • Spikey Domes,
  • Space Blanket, and
  • A Fibre Optic Lamp.

Packs are available to children who have a confirmed disability or chronic illness. Families can apply directly to Caudwell Children for support, with the charity providing 80% of the cost of each pack.

Families will be asked to contribute 20% of the cost, which is £20, and to confirm their financial status and their child’s diagnosis. More information is available at

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