Press Release: Accessible Edinburgh Festival Award
Voting opens for Accessible Edinburgh Festival Award
Award-winning disabled access review charity Euan’s Guide has announced that voting is now open for its Accessible Edinburgh Festival Award.
The annual award is presented to an Edinburgh Festivals venue that is doing something outstanding to include and welcome disabled audiences during August 2016
The charity also called on disabled people to ‘be part of the festival not on the fringe’, inviting disabled access reviews of festival venues, key to unlocking greater access and showcasing best practice.
This year’s Fringe Central also has a series of events entitled Breaking Down Barriers that will examine accessibility, equalities and diversity at the Fringe, and in the wider performing arts sector. Euan’s Guide is delivering Disability Equality Training, encouraging artists, venues and companies to look at how they can better respond to the needs of disabled customers.
Euan MacDonald, Co-Founder of Euan’s Guide said:
“We’re delighted to be running the Euan’s Guide Accessible Edinburgh Festival Award to recognise the great work many venues do to welcome disabled people. Voting closes on Sunday 21st August so vote for your favourite now at www.EuansGuide.com/AccessEdFest.
The whole purpose of our review website and app is to remove the fear of the unknown and inspire people to try new places. Disabled people should be part of the festival not on the fringe, and key to that is encouraging disabled people themselves to review their way to better access on Euan’s Guide.
We are excited to be working with the Edinburgh Festivals to improve access for disabled people. We’d love to hear from other disabled people and their friends and family members about their experiences at the Festivals, their favourite places and where they would recommend to others.”
Welcoming Euan’s Guide Accessible Festival Award, Shona McCarthy, Chief Executive of Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, said:
“We are delighted to have worked with Euan’s Guide on developing our online Access Training Tool, designed to enable anyone taking part in the Fringe to improve the experiences of disabled audiences and participants. Access is a key topic of conversation at Fringe Central this year, with a series of events examining accessibility, equalities and diversity at the Fringe, and in the wider performing arts sector. The Euan’s Guide Accessible Festival Award is a fantastic initiative, that raises awareness about the work that venues can do and are doing to include and welcome disabled audiences.”
Amanda Barry, Head of Marketing at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, said:
“It is great that Euan's Guide is championing best practise for Edinburgh’s Festivals with their annual awards. We strive to make the Book Festival as accessible as possible actively encouraging visitors of all ages, abilities and interests to come and enjoy the wide range of events for adults and children, our cafés and independent bookshops. The Book Festival site in Charlotte Square Gardens is fully wheelchair accessible, we offer a BSL interpretation on-demand for any event in the programme, the brochure is available in a variety of formats including Braille and MP3, venues have infra-red enhanced hearing systems and assistance dogs are welcomed. If any visitor has useful suggestions for how we can further improve, we’d be delighted to hear them.”
Notes to editors
Images of Euan MacDonald & the award are here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/nvhgwh7xh2kiusu/AAD5pPFX5C2PJC4tr7Kyj-fba?dl=0
About the awards:
For the purposes of this award, an accessible venue should welcome disabled people. This may include (but not exclusively) facilities for people who have a sensory impairment, learning disability, long term condition or impairment, or mobility impairment (including wheelchair users).
Secondly, venues must be actively telling people about their facilities for disabled visitors through resources such as their own website, the festival website, an access statement, a listing on Euan’s Guide or a dedicated point of contact.
People can vote for any venue and, once voting closes on Sunday 21st August, venues with the most votes will go through to the final round to be judged by a panel of disabled people. The winners will be announced on Friday 26th August.
To vote for an accessible venue go to:
Euan’s Guide Access in August: A Festival Guide can be found here.
About Euan’s Guide:
Euan’s Guide is the disabled access review website and app that aims to ‘remove the fear of the unknown’ and inspire people to try new places. The website was founded in 2013 by brother and sister, Euan and Kiki MacDonald, after Euan became a powerchair user. After spending hours of their time making enquiries about access at places they wanted to go, the duo realised that they could not be alone in their search for disabled access information. This idea became Euan’s Guide, a digital charity that is helping to open up towns and cities to disabled people everywhere.