You might be wondering if your event or venue needs to consider accessibility. Perhaps you have already put in a some accommodations or have been running for some time without any complaint.
However here at Access:Check we believe that it’s always worth putting in the effort to ensure good accessibility for those who need it. Good accessibility can attract more visitors who may otherwise be unable to attend.
Scenario 1: You are an arts centre and host small exhibitions and open evenings for the public. You are located in a an old mill building with lots of character but have installed a chair lift on the entrance steps and made sure the toilets are accessible. You want to know if there is more you can do to increase attendance at your open evenings.
Access:Check can start with a meeting to understand exactly what your events and venue are like and what you want the experience to be like for visitors. This helps us make sure any accessibility suggestions suit your events in style and tone.
We would then make a venue visit to identify any areas which could cause a problem. During the visit we would approach it as if we were a visitor and consider where we may have difficulty engaging with the content or experience difficulties. We would also review any printed documentation including signs, handout and leaflets and take back examples. At this point you would also have the opportunity to share draft or unpublished leaflets for review.
Access:Check would then produce a report identifying potential issues as well as providing suggestions for how they could be improved, explaining issues clearly and thoroughly. E.g:
- Putting in a handrail on the steps for those with mobility issues.
- The provision of large print handouts or alteration of font to be more legible.
- Identifying venue features which may aggravate those with sensory processing issues.
If needed Access:Check could arrange a follow up meeting to talk over the suggestions and and assess any changes you choose to make.
Scenario 2: You run interactive theatre experiences in your city’s historic buildings. The venue changes depending on the production you are running. Your events involve small groups of attendees taking part in the experience alongside a small number of actors. Overall your accessibility is good and you always choose your venues carefully however you have noticed that disabled visitors don’t always join in in the same way as other visitors and want to work with your team to improve it.
Access:Check can put together a training day for writers and performers that looks at how content can be made more accessible. The day may include a brief overview of accessibility, some examples of disabilities which may make interaction with a performance more difficult and then a series of exercises designed to get the attendees thinking creatively about how they can make every piece they write and perform adaptable and accessible.