Disabled Access Day in Glasgow and Edinburgh
From backstage theatre tours to film screenings, we round up the best events
The first Disabled Access Day was piloted in January last year, with 261 venues taking part across 11 countries. The day encourages disabled people and their families to visit new places and allows venues to showcase the facilities they have on offer, be that BSL interpreted theatre performances, sensory tours of art exhibitions, loop systems or venues fully accessible to wheelchair users. The 2016 edition takes place on Sat 12 Mar and is once again sponsored by Euan's Guide, a review site designed to help people discover which venues are truly accessible.
In Edinburgh, the Festival Theatre and the King's Theatre are running open access backstage tours with loop systems available and BSL interpretation, and there are also discounts available for the matinee performance of Cirque Berserk. The Traverse Theatre has accessible backstage tours and The Lyceum hosts a captioned performance of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. In Glasgow, the King's Theatre and the Theatre Royal are both running a tour for visually impaired patrons and a wheelchair accessible tour, while at the CCA wheelchair tickets are available for Book Arrow Heart and Compulsory Trousers: It's 1985, two new one act plays set in 1985. Tickets for accompanying carers are free and there is a hearing loop available.
Sport & Dance
Dance Base (who won the Euan’s Guide Accessible Fringe Award for Accessible Venue) hold an inclusive ceilidh with a live accordionist as well as tours of the building. Auld Reekie Roller Girls are offering complimentary tickets (+1) to anyone taking part in Disabled Access Day to watch their double header against Dundee Roller Girls and Newcastle's The Canny Belters. Throughout the year, anyone with a disability leisure access card can attend Auld Reekie Roller Girls’ games for free. In Glasgow, there's fast-paced action at Peugeot Ashfield Stadium as Glasgow Tigers Speedway host a speedway expo with free entry for disabled spectators and their carers. Spectators also get to meet the riders and hear an introduction to speedway from the management and team. Over at The Experience, you can find out more about their go-karting arena, laser tag and slot car track. Visitors are also welcome to make use of the multi-sensory room which offers activities such as tracking, colour matching, vocalisation and auditory tasks.
Edinburgh's Dovecot Studio is running two handling sessions: one in jewellery and one in rug tufting. The National Museum of Scotland have tours for visually impaired visitors around two of the Scottish galleries, with an opportunity to touch objects from the handling collection. Over at Modern One, visitors can join an outdoor sculpture sensory tour, while at the Fruitmarket Gallery artist Juliana Capes hosts a taster exhibition tour of Sara Barker's exhibition, CHANGE-THE-SETTING, with portable loop system available. In Glasgow, the CCA will hold a tour of the Merlin James' Long Game exhibition, led by the artist and CCA's curatorial team.
In Edinburgh, the Cameo has staff on hand to explain the facilities and there's a screening of Hail, Caesar! with subtitles, audio description and full wheelchair access. In Glasgow, GFT is showing a captioned and audio described screening of Bridge Of Spies, you can also find out more about Visible Cinema, their Deaf and hard of hearing film club.
Holyrood Palace and Queens Gallery are offering free admission to disabled visitors, and the Scottish Parliament are running a BSL interpreted tour of the building. Edinburgh Zoo has a qualified BSL translator at its animal talks throughout the day, and an accessibility vehicle – which is available every day – to assist visitors across the site.
Stagecoach and Lothian Buses are hosting a Try It Out Day at Edinburgh's Royal Botanic Garden, giving people the opportunity to try out one of their buses, manoeuvre around the space and ask questions about travelling by bus. Barclays branches in both cities have accessibility showcases on display in the banking hall, with staff on hand to discuss the free accessible services they can offer. In Glasgow, Clyde Shopmobility are at Clydebank Town Hall where Jackie Maciera is running a free workshop about disability rights.
Disabled Access Day, Sat 12 Mar.