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Guide to Accessible Theatres in London

London is understood around the globe for its wealthy and illustrious relationship with theatre. It encompasses over 230 theatres and is house to the renowned West Finish district. But as London leads the best way in theatre, the capital city must also capitalise on making theatre accessible for all. 

Luckily, lots of London’s venues within the West End and Off West Finish have already begun making waves in the theatre business. From improvements to bodily access to enabling net accessibility to scheduling more captioned, BSL signed, audio-described and relaxed performances, these are a number of the most accessible theatres in London.

Prince Edward Theatre

Prince Edward Theatre london is accessible

The Delfont Waterproof coat-owned theatre lies near Leicester Sq.. It traditionally observed the ‘bananas dance’ by Josephine Baker, however at the moment is understood for internet hosting large musicals like Disney’s Aladdin and Mary Poppins. 

Entry info is straightforward to navigate to from Prince Edward Theatre’s web site. They state the upcoming accessible performances and description info associated to the bodily building clearly, including a Social Story video. This enables individuals to watch the Prince Edward theatre and explore its amenities prematurely.

  • Captioned performances
  • BSL performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Autism-Friendly performances
  • Contact excursions out there for Aladdin
  • Step free aspect road entry

Savoy Theatre

Savoy Theatre in London's West End

The glittering golden Savoy has a shocking Artwork Deco design. It was previously the house of the D’Oyly Carte Opera Firm, retaining the opulence and grandeur to this present day. Owned by ATG, the theatre group also oversee accessibility. On the ATG web site, there’s a fairly detailed information concerning the Savoy’s accessible options, as well as a chart to assist with booking the fitting seats relying on the patron’s accessibility needs. The venue’s personal website has more particulars, together with descriptions of accessible performances and other necessary info, corresponding to where the interpreter is positioned and the place dialogue seems on display.

  • Captioned performances
  • BSL performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Infrared Loop system (hook up with listening to aids)
  • Headsets (magnifies sound on stage)
  • Step free road access
  • Step free access rest room
  • Sub/Sur Titled exhibits
  • Relaxed performances
  • Contact Excursions
  • Entry Host on arrival (optionally available)

Apollo Victoria

Auditorium of Apollo Victoria in London

Another Art Deco design, the Apollo Victoria theatre is like a ‘mermaid’s dream of Heaven’. Brilliant pink lights, sea inexperienced carpets and silver organ pipes make the Apollo a magical underwater world. 

The venue additionally ranks nicely for accessibility, scoring four out of 5 stars on Euan’s Information. Though there were some bodily entry points, the pleasant and attentive employees have been capable of assist patrons overcome them. The ATG additionally supply a Visual Story on request for the Victoria, alongside documents outlining manufacturing info which will influence epilepsy or seizures.

  • Captioned performances
  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Touch Excursions
  • Audio Described performances
  • Giant Print/Braille programmes obtainable
  • Access Host on arrival (optionally available)
  • Sennheiser MobileConnect WiFi sound amplification system (connects high quality audio to sensible system)
  • Induction Loop Necklace
  • Headset

Trafalgar Studios

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Trafalgar Studios isn’t recognized for hosting the mega musicals transferred from Broadway. As an alternative, it hosts quite a lot of fascinating and numerous performs from rising skills. 

It also aims to be highly accessible, offering degree access from the street and having the foyer, lobby bar and field workplace on the same degree. The theatre’s website has detailed info referring to variety of steps and methods to access every a part of the venue, alongside a visible familiarisation story. Trafalgar Studios claim to have no less than one entry host on website and a member of the Box Workplace with BSL coaching. 

  • Induction Loop Necklace
  • Headset
  • Cellular Connect and Radio Enhancement System
  • Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Contact tours
  • Braille/ giant print forged lists obtainable

Royal Opera House

Royal Opera House in Covent Garden

Residence to the Royal Opera, Royal Ballet and the Royal House Orchestra, the venue is certainly one of London’s most prestigious. From new comedies to passionate classics, the Royal Opera House is great for each first-time opera-goers in addition to lifetime followers of the discipline.

Because of trendy updates, the theatre has enhanced its accessibility through the years. On the web site, each area has a devoted access page, permitting guests to completely explore the venue. It also particulars info associated to reserving, getting to the venue and attending a efficiency.

“At the guts of Accessibility at the Royal Opera Home is a extremely effective system for speaking the person access necessities of consumers to our front of house employees, making certain that from the point of reserving we know what the buyer requirements are and that they are met as a priority. This is a sensible and personalised system, which works nicely resulting from entry necessities differing in every case.” Colin Legge, Entry Coordinator at ROH

  • Trantec Radio System
  • Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Touch excursions
  • Giant print info obtainable
  • Accessible bogs on all flooring
  • Raise access to all floors

Victoria Palace Theatre

Victoria Palace Theatre in London

Amongst its many claims to fame, the Frank Matcham-desgined Victoria Palace witnessed the London theatre debut of Elizabeth Taylor and the opening of the Olivier Award-winning Billy Elliot the Musical. At present, it exhibits the record-breaking musical masterpiece by Lin-Manuel Miranda Hamilton. 

As with the Prince Edward, Delfont Waterproof coat have also created one other social story for the Victoria Palace Theatre to assist autistic visitors. There’s also an Access Host on website, dedicated to serving to individuals with access needs upon arrival. 

After visiting the Victoria Palace, blogger Nina Grant claims the theatre listened to her and instantly rectified points associated to accessibility. “After my expertise at the Victoria Palace Theatre, they did assure me that things had modified based mostly on my recommendations. From what I’ve heard from different wheelchair utilizing associates who’ve been to see Hamilton since, it appears to have improved.” Nina Grant, Blogger of brainkittens

  • Sennheiser Infrared Enhanced Listening to headsets
  • Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • BSL performances
  • Step free aspect road entry
  • Accessible Theatres in London’s Off West End

Bridge Theatre

Bridge Theatre in London is committed to accessibility.

The brand new venue sits near the banks of the Thames close to the Tower Bridge – hence the identify. According the London Theatre, The Bridge is the most important business theatre within the city outdoors of the West End. It’s the mixed expertise of founders Nicholas Hytner and Nick Starr, who worked collectively at the Nationwide Theatre. 

Beyond providing accessible performances, Bridge Theatre also targets younger individuals with autism. Their manufacturing of A Midsummer Night time’s Dream invited members with autism to unravel the timeless story utilizing sensory video games. It also an accessible website, which conforms with W3C accessibility tips for degree AA compliance. 

  • Captioned performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Access Record for communicating wants
  • Road degree access
  • Wheelchair rent
  • Accessible web site

Barbican Theatre

Barbican arts centre contains one of London's most accessible theatres.

The Barbican is considered one of London’s outstanding multidisciplinary arts venues, full with theatres, cinemas, art galleries, a library, a conservatory and a live performance corridor. 

The venue is are dedicated to being considered one of London’s most accessible theatres and performing arts venues. They work alongside Angle is Every little thing within the TIcketing With out Obstacles Coalition to promote conversation about booking of entry necessities. The Barbican’s web site has numerous info surrounding accessibility, together with guides, maps, amenities, events and membership. There is a video that exhibits guests the constructing, overlaying accessible entrances, screening and occasions, parking and more. 

  • Infrared listening to loop
  • Audio Described performances
  • Captioned performances
  • BSL performances
  • Altering Locations rest room (Beech Road Cinema location, other accessible bogs out there on the Silk Road Centre)
  • Free parking for blue badge-holders
  • Audio guides
  • Giant print guides
  • Entry maps
  • Ramped access from important entrance
  • Raise to all ranges

Lyric Hammersmith

Lyric Hammersmith theatre in London's Off West End

The Lyric is the most important theatre in West London, which hosts impressive new productions and promotes accessible performances. Its programme is eclectic and thrilling, incorporating family-friendly pantomimes, revivals of classics and beautiful never-before-seen exhibits.

 Across the Major Home, Studio and Reuben Foundation Wing, the Lyric claims its amenities are absolutely accessible. The location includes a Changing Locations rest room and lifts to all sections with voice announcement and Braille signs. The Lyric additionally hosts workshops and courses to foster creativity of young individuals, some in collaboration with Action on Incapacity. 

  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Open Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Sennheiser Infrared Audio Enhancement System
  • Changing places rest room
  • Touch tours
  • Carry entry to all areas

Polka Theatre

Polka Theatre in Wimbledon is a venue geared towards children's theatre and accessibility.

As a youngsters’s theatre, Polka is a very fashionable day trip for the household. The Guardian describes it as a ‘local and national treasure’, because of its prime performances geared to younger audiences. 

The venue is briefly closed till 2020 to bear a redevelopment. These modifications will embrace wonderful steps for physical accessibility, together with automated entrance doorways, a sensory backyard, improved carry entry to all floors, a sensory suite, new accessible bogs. It is going to also permit wheelchair users to access onto the primary stage for the first time.

“Central to Polka’s mission is to make stay theatre accessible for all youngsters, no matter what their background. Making our venue and work as inclusive as attainable is central to that goal. We are excited that the redevelopment of Polka Theatre will enable more youngsters with entry necessities to experience and participate in our work.” Lynette Shanbury, Government Director at Polka

  • BSL performances
  • BSL integrated performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Induction Loop (in Major Theatre and Journey Theatre)
  • Road degree access
  • Contact tours

Roundhouse

Roundhouse Venue in London

Situated in Camden borough, the Roundhouse is a dynamic multidisciplinary theatre with a vibrant programme. The long-lasting round venue has hosted occasions such because the BBC Electric Proms, iTunes Festivals and loads of experimental theatre productions.

The Roundhouse can also be a powerhouse for creating the talents of young individuals locally. This welcoming and inclusive focus extends to their stance on accessibility. Though the building is listed and faces some issues, they’ve made efforts to advertise access for all. You can too find plenty of info online of their detailed access information, visual tales and virtual tours.

“The Roundhouse prides itself on being accessible to all. Partnering with Angle is Every thing evokes us to repeatedly assessment and revise our supply, making certain we’re one of many main venues almost about Deaf and disabled access, we’re proud to be a Gold Commonplace venue.” Tor Evans, Roundhouse

  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Road degree entry
  • Listening to Loop system (box workplace and MADE Bar and Kitchen)
  • Sennheiser Listening to Enhancement System (Primary Area and Studio Theatre)
  • Entry listing to speak needs
  • Accessible bogs on all flooring
  • Accessible reserving online

Shakespeare’s Globe

The modern Shakespeare's Globe is much more accessible than the original London theatre.

Impressed by the unique Globe Theatre, this venue has a special place on the earth of theatre by way of its hyperlinks to the immortal poet, William Shakespeare. Though its programme is filled with traditional Shakespeare plays, the Globe exhibits evidence of the 21st century with experimental variations. Guests can watch tragedies and epic romances with a brand new perspective, alongside numerous talks, readings, and family events.

Assisted performances are basically an invitation. At Shakespeare’s Globe we now have two radically democratic spaces, however democracies can solely perform when no individual is barred from contributing. In internet hosting a number of assisted performances all yr round, we’re acknowledging that each one individuals, of their fantastic variety, have a proper to interact with our plays.” David Bellwood, Access Manager

  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Captioned performances (together with particular person tablets for captioning within the SW Playhouse)
  • Audio Described performances
  • Road degree entry
  • Induction Loop system
  • Access Scheme to communicate wants
  • Touch excursions/ familiarisation
  • Giant print/ excessive contrast brochures
  • Audio introduction to season online

Theatre Royal Stratford East

The stage of TRSE by Peter Dazeley

Bringing accessible theatre to the various space of Newham, East London, Theatre Royal Stratford East prides itself in being part of the group. The programme is exciting and recent, incorporating their in-house exhibits with touring productions. 

The theatre is a part of the Ramps on the Moon consortium, which brings collectively a collaborative network of six Nationwide Portfolio Organisations. Ramps on the Moon goals to realize a step change in the employment and inventive alternatives for disabled performers and artistic teams, and a cultural change in the collaborating organisations to enable accessibility to grow to be a central part of their considering and aesthetics.

  • BSL performances
  • Relaxed performances
  • Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Touch tours
  • Six wheelchair areas
  • Entry mailing listing
  • Infrared induction loop

Chickenshed

Chickenshed theatre in London

Stemming from a former hen barn in Barnet, the theatre is likely one of the most promising accessible performing arts venues in London. It has 4 performance areas, and programmes theatre, comedy and music exhibits. 

Chickenshed has many features to advertise access, in addition to numerous outreach tasks, schooling programs and working with different organisations. It goals to create excellent theatre that celebrates variety and constructive change.

“Chickenshed is an organisation that’s constructed on a philosophy of inclusion – we consider in the value of each particular person, and our vision is of a society that welcomes and values everybody. That idea applies as a lot to our audiences (both present and potential) – we would like our exhibits and our constructing to be open, obtainable and welcoming to everyone.” Kevin Metchear, Head of Communications & Business Improvement at Chickenshed

  • Sennheiser Infrared System in essential home (for audio increase, induction loop and audio description)
  • Moveable Infrared System for other spaces
  • Captioned performances (using captioning field and/or tablets)
  • BSL performances (absolutely integrated into selected exhibits)
  • Audio Described performances
  • Touch Tours
  • Pre-show audio notes
  • Season brochures and programmes out there in various formats
  • Accessible website

National Theatre

National Theatre in London has lots of accessible features.

Typically considered the main theatre of Britain, National Theatre is certainly one of London’s most outstanding. It consists of three distinctive theatres; the Olivier, Lyttelton and Dorfman, comprising a blended programme of Shakespeare and different basic works with extra modern writing.

The National Theatre’s web site particulars entry to every of the three theatres, amenities for different disabilities and every sort of accessible performance.  Moreover, AccessAble declare the employees at National Theatre obtain incapacity consciousness training too. 

“Along with our accessible performances, we’ve got lately launched our sensible caption glasses for D/deaf, deafened or arduous of listening to audiences and ProFile, a video database for D/deaf and disabled actors which business professionals can use as a casting software. We hope each of these developments may have a huge effect, not only on the NT, but in the leisure business as an entire.” Ros Hayes, Head of Access at National Theatre

  • Infrared System 
  • Script lending service
  • Captioned performances 
  • Sensible Caption Glasses
  • BSL performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Contact Tours
  • Relaxed performances
  • Pre-show audio notes
  • Accessible website
  • Giant print seasonal brochure
  • Free forged lists in braille and enormous print
  • Access Record

Kiln Theatre & Cinema

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Previously the Tricycle Theatre, The Guardian describes the venue as having a matchless report in exposing justice. It has a popularity for displaying theatre that displays modern politics and numerous and underrepresented communities. 

 In line with Octavia Basis, Kiln is among the prime ten most accessible venues in West London. Coupled with the refurbishment to enhance physical access, Kiln’s Entrance of House employees additionally bear accessibility coaching. This undoubtedly lends to the venue’s holistic strategy to breaking down limitations. 

“Kiln is an accessible building with entry to adapted bogs on all three ranges. We’ve got added three wheelchair spaces to our theatre auditorium and lowered our field workplace counter to accommodate all differing types and sizes of wheelchairs – we maintain these spaces and may even supply tickets to clients in wheelchairs on the door, which is a really rare factor to be able to do.” Nina Primeraki, Advertising and Communications Supervisor at Kiln Theatre & Cinema

  • Relaxed performances
  • Captioned performances
  • Audio Described performances
  • Accessible bogs
  • Touch Tours

This article was written by Aminah Barnes and initially revealed on TickX.