Z-arts leads the way in improving Access for cultural venues with Access All Areas

After a family launch in October Access All Areas returns to Z-arts for 2 more free events.

On Sunday 1 October Z-arts welcomed children with disabilities and their families to the first Access All Areas at Z-arts. The stage was set: a variety of instruments from bells to cellos waited in the Music Space, glitter sparkled in the Art Space, fabrics and fun props were on hand to twirl in the Dance Space, and the Drama Space was ready for adventures through the jungle. The Sensory Room provided an oasis of cushioned calm, and away from the action a dedicated quiet space was available for children and families who needed to step away from the fun for a moment or two.

Families were welcomed to the free event at Z-arts by a friendly team of disability-inclusive facilitators, volunteers and staff, including two BSL interpreters. The spirit of the event was one of safe exploration. Families were given fun and colourful maps to create their own adventures, and they were free to enter and leave activities as they pleased. Long before they arrived, families were sent an email with pictures and information about the facilitators and the activities, as well as contact information in case they had specific questions. Everything was in place for everyone to have a good time. Take a look at the event video

The feedback from visitors and facilitators alike, was entirely positive. “It was absolutely fabulous!”; “the activities were pitched just right”; “the facilitators were very friendly and welcoming”. One parent wrote, “It’s vital that families have access to these kinds of events.”

In the words of the event ambassador, Cherylee Houston, Access All Areas at Z-arts isa great way to make the arts accessible to all whilst having an adventure as a family.”

The fun days are the result of months of strategic consultations and training sessions with disability-focused arts organisations such as Autism for the Arts, the Birches School, Triple C and Venture Arts. Z-arts is committed is constantly improving accessibility and inclusiveness in every aspect of their organisation, and Access All Areas at Z-arts is a great way to put policies into practice and provide for members of our community who previously may have felt that cultural spaces were not “for them”.

The next Access All Areas fun days take place on Sunday 5 November and Sunday 3 December. Like the first event, the next fun days will feature diverse and inclusive activities in music, drama, art and dance, specially catered to the requirements of children and families with disabilities.

If you have any questions about Access All Areas at Z-arts or accessibility at Z-arts in general, please contact our dedicated access lead Lowri Jones: lowri@z-arts.org or call 0161 232 1912

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Z-arts – Z-arts is Manchester’s only dedicated venue for children and family theatre and the leading partner in Big Imaginations, a consortium of North West venues and promoters bringing world class family theatre to the region. Z-arts mission is to inspire young people through all forms of art and help them begin their creative journey.

Accessibility at Z-arts – We want to make your visit to Z-arts as enjoyable as possible and we try our very best to cater for everyone’s needs, however big or small. As well as our wheelchair accessible building we have a dedicated audio induction loop in the theatre, free tickets for personal assistants and relaxed performances. Click here to learn more.

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