About the National Paralympic Heritage Centre

Stoke Mandeville is widely acknowledged as the birthplace of the Paralympic movement and the National Paralympic Heritage Centre at Stoke Mandeville Stadium celebrates and explore this unique history. The displays showcase the determination, sportsmanship and vision that gave the world the Paralympic Games including:

  • The life and work of Professor Sir Ludwig Guttmann.
  • Key milestones in the journey from the 1948 Stoke Mandeville Games to the present day Paralympic Games.
  • The development of wheelchair sports.
  • Paralympic ceremonies.

Vicky Hope-Walker's interview with BBC Three Counties radio can be listened to here: 

Visitor information

Vicky Hope-Walker standing at the entrance to the National Paralympic Heritage Centre

Free Admission

Opening Hours
Monday 12-6pm
Tuesday 12-6pm
Wednesday 10am-6pm
Thursday 10am-6pm
Friday 10am-6pm
Saturday 10am-6pm
Sunday 10am-6pm

During school holidays, when activities are planned, the centre may be closed for up to 30 minutes.

Group Tours and Talks
To arrange for a group tour please save the downloadable booking form, fill in and send the form by email to: [email protected].

Accessibility
Getting to, and visiting the Heritage Centre

Celebrating the opening of the Paralympic Heritage Centre

On Friday 29th and Saturday 30th March 2019, the National Paralympic Heritage Trust were delighted to celebrate the opening of the first Paralympic Heritage Centre at Stoke Mandeville Stadium, the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement. Over 180 guests were welcomed to the launch on Friday where Sir Philip Craven, Paralympian, spoke of his wheelchair basketball experiences in the 1960s and Eva Loeffler shared fond memories of her father, Professor Sir Ludwig Guttmann, the founder of the Paralympic Movement.

On Saturday the centre was opened to the public. Diane Hands won the competition to cut the ribbon with guest Paralympian, John Harris. Visitors had guided tours around the centre; participated in ‘have a go’ Paralympic sport sessions; watched drama performances from ‘I Have a Voice Too’ theatre group; and listened to John Harris’s story of his gold medal win at the 1984 Paralympic Games (watch the film clip of John here).

Sir Philip Craven and Eva Loeffler cutting the ribbon at the official opening of the Heritage Centre

Sally Haynes cutting the cake at the official launch of the Heritage Centre Diane Hands and John Harris cutting the ribbon at the public opening

Sir Philip Craven, Eva Loeffler and Dr Guttmann's great grandchildren cut the ribbon at the official opening.

Sally Haynes, Paralympian, cutting the cake at the official opening. Competition winner Diane Hands cuts the ribbon with John Harris, Paralympian, at the public opening.

Free Summer Activities

Available daily

Just a quick visit? Try out our family trail when you arrive. There's also activity sheets for families and schools. 

28th May, 11-11:45am – Family story time and Explore

Aimed at under 5's with a parent/guardian, you will be able to come and enjoy a story in our new Heritage Centre and explore the displays.  Places are limited so please book by emailing us here

25th June, 11-11:45am – Family story time 'Susan Laughs' and Explore

Aimed at under 5's with a parent/guardian, you will be able to come and enjoy a story in our new Heritage Centre and explore the displays.  Places are limited so please book by emailing us here

29th July, 11am and 2pm - Tours with BSL interpretation 

Each tour will last approximately 20 minutes. 

Every Friday in August, 2-4pm – 'Incredible Me' days

Fun activities for children between 6-11 years including the Big Art Challenge. Please book as places are limited.

14th August 2-3pm - Meet the Paralympian

We are delighted to welcome a Paralympian to the National Paralympic Heritage Centre. Come and find out what it is like to compete at an elite level. Includes a Q&A time. Places are limited so please book by emailing us here

Makaton and Touch Tours

Coming soon!

School sessions

  • Formal 45-minute sessions for schools available for KS 2-4.  Subjects catered for.
  • STEM, English, PSHE, Citizenship, Art and Design and other cross-curricular activities.
  • Online resources for use as either part of your self-led visit or to compliment your formal sessions.
  • Self-led trails.

For more information about any of our activities contact us on 01296 489929 or email [email protected]


Share your stories

Please get in touch if you have any stories connected to the Paralympics and disability sport. You can contact us at [email protected] 

Follow us on twitter and facebook using #paraheritagestories


Partners

The National Paralympic Heritage Trust is supported by the British Paralympic Association, WheelPower - British Wheelchair Sport, Aylesbury Vale District Council and Buckinghamshire County Council, with grant aid from:

Logo of AIM Biffa Award Logo of AVDC Community Chest Logo of Heart of Bucks Logo of the Heritage Lottery Fund Logo of Rothschild Foundation Logo of the Wellcome Trust
Image credit: Stoke Mandeville Stadium courtesy of More Leisure