ATG announces plans for Disabled Access Day
Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG) has announced its plans for Disabled Access Day on 12 March 2016.
ATG venues across the UK will be taking part in the national awareness day sponsored by Euan’s Guide, the disabled access review website.
ATG staff have been working hard to overcome perceived barriers to visiting the Theatre and have organised a raft of experiences to welcome new customers who may be nervous about a visit to the theatre, or indeed not have realised the services ATG offer. At every performance to make customers feel at home, ATG offers chill out areas, staff guides who can assist customers to their seat, at seat service bar and refreshment service, hearing enhancements and more.
However on Disabled Access Day ATG venues have organised theatre tours, special ticket offers, a free Relaxed Screening of Paddington hosted by Cbeebies presenter Chris Jarvis and a teddy bears picnic in an indoor wood.
On Friday 11 March (the day before Disabled Access Day) the Playhouse Theatre in London will welcome Quince and Chad (and their owners!) from Guide Dogs who will be training ATG front of house staff between 2 and 4pm.
The following day (Saturday 12 March), guide dog puppies, trainee dogs and qualified dogs, will be at the Playhouse Theatre to mingle with audiences at the matinee and evening performances of The End of Longing starring Matthew Perry.
Disabled Access Day Highlights at ATG venues include:
- Apollo Victoria, London – Venue touch tours, talks from Stagetext and National Autistic Society representatives about upcoming Autism Friendly Performance of Wicked. Free tea and coffee
- Aylesbury Waterside Theatre – Captioned and audio described performance of Private Lives with touch tour, sensory experience in second space, arts and crafts, local charity stalls.
- Bristol Hippodrome – Accessible theatre tour
- King’s Theatre Glasgow – Captioned performance of Goodnight Mister Tom, accessible theatre tour
- Theatre Royal Glasgow – Venue touch tours
- Liverpool Empire – Audio described performance of Annie, touch tours, BSL signed tour
- Milton Keynes Theatre – Audio described and touch tour of Hobson's Choice. Captioned performance in the evening. Talks about theatre’s access facilities.
- Richmond Theatre – BSL accessible tour, audio described performance and touch tour of 42nd Street.
- Regent Theatre and Victoria Hall, Stoke-on-Trent – Introduction to access facilities tours, touch tour of Impossible.
- Sunderland Empire – Accessible theatre tour and refreshments
- New Victoria Theatre, Woking – Accessible theatre tour
- Ambassadors Cinema, Woking – Free Relaxed Performance screening of Paddington with subtitles, teddy bear picnic theme.
- York Grand Opera House – 2-4-1 for those partaking in DA Day for Wendy Cope’s show.
Visit www.atg.co.uk for individual venue contact details.
Karen Townsend, ATG’s Head of Learning and Access, said, “Historically theatre accessibility has been perceived as difficult. We here at ATG like to challenge that assumption. Our staff are constantly striving to give all our customers the Red Carpet experience, finding inventive solutions to apparent barriers.
“From our order at your seat bar service to a newly commissioned app at our Theatre Royal in Brighton designed to enable those with learning disabilities to understand the day to day workings of a theatre, Relaxed Performances, Widget Symbol Resources and beyond, we are confident the welcome in our theatres for all customers is second to none.
“Our network of venue Access Champions are always on hand to deliver a personal service to those who need assistance from booking your seat onwards, ensuring everyone has the opportunity to experience the joy of live theatre.
“We are delighted that our venues are able to participate to help support this fantastic annual day, and help Euan’s Guide grow nationally.”