Find out more about the City of Charles Sturt's response to COVID-19 including service updates, information, recommendations and resources from SA Health, WHO and the Government.

Dismiss alert


We want to enable people of all abilities to take part in the community. There's a range of accessibility initiatives around the City of Charles Sturt that make our community more inclusive and accessible.

The City of Charles Sturt enjoys 12 kilometres of natural pristine beaches. Beach going is an Australian way of life and is something that most of us take for granted. However, for 1 in 5 members of our community, who experience mobility impairment; access and inclusion at the beach can pose significant difficulties.

The City of Charles wanted to address inaccessibility and to be a leader in this field. We are proud to present Henley Beach as a totally accessible beach for everyone to enjoy.

Henley Beach is the first beach in South Australia to boast an inclusive suite of facilities. In addition to offering our accessible beach mat 24/7 along with free beach wheelchair hire- we can now boast a nationally accredited “Changing Places” accessible public toilet and change facility. The new facility is situated just north of the Henley Square, adjoining the existing amenities block, which is also equipped with a mainstream accessible toilet.

Please note: access to the Changing Places facility is via a MLAK Key.

Beach mats

Beach matting is a long sturdy mat that can be rolled out over the top of soft sand. It is accessible by wheelchair and those who have difficulty walking through soft sand to reach the water's edge.

Beach mats are in use at Henley Beach, seven days a week between October and Easter each year. Mat roll out is subject to tide times, weather conditions and resources.

Beach wheelchairs 

Did you know you can hire a wheelchair that can go into the water? They're available for free half-day hire from October to Easter each year.

We have two types of beach wheelchairs for hire with different features. Please check out which chair is best suited for you and familiarise yourself with the Use and Safety Conditions:

Mobi-Chair - Use and Safety Conditions

Davinci Mobile Beachster
Davinci Mobile Beachster - Use and Safety Conditions

Hire Times:
Morning Hire: 8.30am – 12.30pm
Afternoon Hire: 1pm – 5pm

Bookings are essential. Book online via the link below or call 8408 1333 for more information.

Book now

How to collect a booked wheelchair

Once you've booked, you can collect the wheelchair from the Henley Surf Lifesaving Club at 246 Esplanade, Henley Beach.

There is a storage facility on the southern side external to the building. An MLAK (Master Locksmiths Access Key) gives you access to the storage facility. You can collect the MLAK from Henley Library, 378 Seaview Road, Henley Beach.

COVID-19 safety

We're encouraging members of our community to follow SA Health COVID-19 hygiene guidelines when using our accessible beach mats and wheelchairs.

  • Maintain social distancing of at least 1.5 metres where possible
  • Conduct frequent environmental cleaning and disinfection, especially of touch-points
  • Use the available hand sanitiser and wipes on entry to the wheelchair storage area

Using and returning MLAK keys 

We encourage accessible beach users to purchase an MLAK for individual use. Learn more about purchasing an MLAK.

Alternatively, MLAK keys can be borrowed at the Henley Library (378 Seaview Rd, Henley Beach) and the Civic Centre Library (72-74 Woodville Road, Woodville)  during operating hours. You will need to be a library member to borrow a key.

Keys can be picked up to 2 days before your booking.

Keys must be returned within 1 day of booking. If out of library operating hours, please place key in an envelope with your name and booking details on it and place in the library returns chute.

It is the hirer’s responsibility to return the key promptly or late fees may apply.

Henley Library Opening Hours

Monday Closed
Tuesday 9:30am to 5pm
Wednesday 1pm to 5pm
Thursday 9:30am to 5pm
Friday 9:30am to 5pm 
Saturday 10am to 2pm
Sunday 12pm to 4pm
Closed on public holidays and on the Easter Weekend

Civic Library Opening Hours

Monday - Friday 9:30am to 5pm
Saturday 10am to 4pm
Sunday 12pm to 4pm
Closed on public holidays and on the Easter Weekend

Changing Places are accessible toilets and adult change facilities for people with high support needs and their carers. Changing Places have plenty of space, assistance and specialised equipment that helps people to use toilets safely, comfortably and with dignity.

We have a Changing Place at Henley Square, Henley Beach. It's accessible with an MLAK key. Learn more about MLAK keys.

The Changing Places concept was developed and established in Australia in 2009. It was based on a model developed in the UK. It has now been included in the 2019 Building Code of Australia to provide suitable facilities for people with high support needs who cannot use standard accessible toilets.

The Master Locksmiths Access Key (MLAK) system is a unique and innovative system that uses a universal lock and key. It allows people with disabilities to access dedicated public facilities 24 hours a day. It was developed to increase the availability of accessible, clean and functioning public facilities for people who may have difficulty using standard facilities.

MLAKs give you access to facilities within the City of Charles Sturt. You can hire or purchase one for individual use.

Learn more about MLAK.

We've created Libraries without Borders to bring a world of information and entertainment to the homes of people unable to visit one of our 5 local libraries.

Learn more about our Mobile Library and Home Library services.

The Henley Surf Life Saving Club (HSLSC) is committed to inclusive programs and runs a Snippers (Special Nippers) program annually.


The HSLSC Snippers program increases the reach and inclusivity of disability programs through a modified Juniors program. The Snippers program started in 2018/19 season and was an overwhelming success.

Snippers welcomes children with any disability into an inclusive environment to learn about surf safety. The goal of the program is integration into the Nippers program (with extra support if required) as the children's skills improve.

The Snippers program runs for around 6 weeks during the summer lifesaving season, at the same time as the Nippers. The program runs similarly to Nippers, with skills and tasks modified to suit program participants.

More information

On 4 February 2017 we organised a beach access event day to trial a beach mat that has never been used in South Australia before. The City of Charles Sturt would like to thank Push Mobility, Henley Surf Lifesaving Club, Accessible Beaches, Dignity for Disability, John Nieddu Photography, Push Adventures and all volunteers and attendees for making this event such a success.

Watch the video from the day:

Need help?

Customer Contact
8408 1111