We are a disability-led charity with 18 years of experience supporting non-profit and commercial organisations to make what they do more accessible and inclusive for Deaf and disabled people.
Our core work is centred on our status as an Arts Council England Sector Support Organisation for the live music industry, working in partnership with audiences, artists and the industry to improve Deaf and disabled people’s access to live music. Our CEO Suzanne Bull MBE was announced as the DWP’s Sector Champion for the Live Music Industry in February 2017.
Our professional expertise is reinforced by a rolling programme of research and the continual feedback of hundreds of Deaf and disabled mystery shoppers, who report back on their experiences accessing venues and events across the UK. We also recruit and manage volunteers to assist with access provision a several major camping festivals, further connecting us to the practicalities of delivering access on the ground at events.
Over 160 venues and festivals across the UK have signed up to our Venue and Festival Charter of Best Practice. The Charter provides a framework built around Bronze, Silver and Gold awards with which to examine all aspects of making live music venues and events accessible. We translate the Equality Act 2010 into accessible good practice guidance for service providers.
In 2017, our Charter was recognised by the influential UK Live Music Group as the ‘industry standard’ when it comes to live music accessibility.
In that year, we also launched the Grassroots Venue Charter, in order to assist small independent venues, and a DIY Access Guide for bands, artists and promoters to further support access to music at the grassroots level.
Beyond our Charter work, our flexible commercial consultancy, training, and Attitude Champion framework is informed by our unique experience of supporting the creative and incredibly diverse sector that is the UK's live music industry.
In April 2018 we announced the Ticketing Without Barriers Coalition with the launch of our 4th State of Access Report - our biennial publication on live music accessibility. This unprecedented coalition, made possible by our trusted position within the music industry, is a growing group of over 40 industry umbrella organisations, ticketing companies, venues and event companies who collectively represent the majority of the live music market.
With this coalition, we aim to make a significant and lasting impact upon the access booking experiences of Deaf and disabled music fans across the UK.