Wave-length have just come to the close of another season of venue audits including nature sites, galleries, old houses to be opened to the public and museums.
One of the most striking areas we have discussed and reported back on this last year has been the concerntration on big physical changes at the cost of the subtle, social impact changes needed. Yes its clear the physcial has to come first but then you need to sit back and consider its appeal, the welcome it provides and its potential to attract visitors back.
This year gave us a few examples of this whether in having to access through the rear of the building but with no welcome signage – just a small sign and/or bell would have been welcoming. Then big welcoming entrances to exhibitions when entering via the stairs but take the lift and you don’t know where to go when you come out. For the visually impaired putting cards next to art pieces but not always making sure people can read them.
Some of the sites however shone when it came to overcoming social challenges and perhaps my favourite this last year was visiting a park in the design stage where not only had they made sure equipment is accessible but you would not be able to immediately tell it was, neither was it seperated from other equipment allowing for friends and siblings to play together.
By getting services right and in most cases much can be done with little cost and then sharing details of services effectively in your marketing you can improve both visitor experience and visitor numbers. A positive outcome for all.
If you would like to know more about our access audit services then just get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.