Accessibility – Strategic planning is vital.

Visits Unlimited February 2014 survey of Yorkshire attractions highlighted the key issues for venues in becoming accessible to disabled visitors.  Major challenges included:

1)  No evidence of planning strategically for accessibility – budget planning, training, targeted marketing.

2)  Little or no training completed by staff at attractions surveyed.

3)  Staff expressed interest in training to improve the service they offered to disabled guests.

We understand that accessibility at venues must start with management buy-in.  Emma Manners, Learning Officer at Fountains Abbey states,

We recognise that all our Project planning needs to include disability access and awareness.  Management training will be crucial in rolling out a programme of change.  From event planning to playground development, signage and pre-information, disability access and awareness needs to become a part of all our projects to transform equality and the visitor experience for the long term.”

BBC coverage and recent report from Vitalise  highlight some of the key challenges faced by  disabled visitors.