10 STUDENTS from the Princes Trust at Salford College of Further Education built the sensory wall for less than £50 for people with complex needs at the Waterside Resource Centre on Billy Lane, Clifton.

The students aged between 16 and 24 were all previously classed as (NEET) which meant they weren’t in employment or educational training before they joined the 12-week course.

As part of a community project, students built a sensory wall for service users at the community centre run by Aspire, who hold activities for those with complex needs.

Princes Trust Team Leader at the College, Ian Rowbottom said: “Some of the service users at the centre have quite severe autism and they spend quite a lot of the time feeling their way around walls.

“So, the centre thought ‘might as well put a sensory wall in’, so they could feel themselves around that wall with all sorts of different things, rather than brick, to be a bit more interesting for them.”

The 4ft high by 8ft long sensory wall was built from three wooden board’s and fitted with everyday objects such as cut up bottle corks and household sponges which were chosen to stimulate the users.

Sensory Wall
‘Student’s work’ credit Ian Rowbottom
Sensory Wall
‘Leaving their mark’ credit Ian Rowbottom






“Obviously this will develop, or help develop some of their motor skills, with all sorts of things on it that they can touch, feel around and squeeze and that’s the aim of the sensory wall,” Ian added.

It’s thought the wall will also stimulate people who are either deaf, blind or have little motor ability in the same way that people with autism will engage with its features.

DIY Superstore Wickes in Swinton donated the wooden boards but students raffled off donations received from the community and raised £50 to buy the objects.

And it appears the project has proved popular with bosses, directors from the Aspire group visited the wall before praising each of the students for their work.

The sensory wall will now become a fixture of the centre where it’s hoped service users will take advantage of it.


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