Here is a selection of some more interesting disability accessible venues throughout the country.
Wolverhampton Art Gallery
The Wolverhampton Art Gallery focuses mainly on Georgian and Victorian artworks, and seeks to engage visitors with relevant historical themes. They feature an innovative, award-winning Sensing Sculpture gallery that is open to everybody and provides a rich sensory experience featuring touchable objects. This may be of particular interest to visually impaired visitors and those with certain learning disabilities. The objects are chosen specifically for their sensory properties, and range from natural objects to textiles, to bronzes and much more. In addition to these sensory benefits, the exhibit also aims to offer an insight into artists’ relationships with the works they produce by offering such a close, tactile association with the objects. The gallery also provides Braille information, sign language interpretation, large print, and full wheelchair access.
Manchester Art Gallery
An impressive collection of over 25,000 items, Manchester Art Gallery includes pieces such as fine art, costume and decorative art spanning 600 years. It won the Manchester Tourism Award for Large Visitor Attraction of the Year 2008. Smoky city landscapes, 19th century Romanticism and more abstract modern art are all incorporated. The gallery features relevant and challenging tours including an exploration of items connected to the slave trade and their meanings for modern people. Audio guides for people with visual impairments, Braille, Induction Loops for the hard of hearing, touch exhibits and full wheelchair access are all provided.
Lady Lever Art Gallery
Liverpool’s Lady Lever Art Gallery is part of a small verdant village and contains art items from the personal collection of William Hesketh Lever, including porcelain works, furniture and painting. Wheelchair access is sufficient, with most galleries accessible; however the smaller mezzanine level is not reachable by elevator. Assistance dogs are welcome and resources for many disabilities are utilised. The website features detailed instructions on getting to the gallery.
Fi Fie Fo Fum
The quirkily named Fi Fie Fo Fum is a tranquil rural gallery in Northumberland featuring fine art. Among the exhibits are seasonally themed spaces: Spring, Summer and Autumn-Winter. Their website also provides useful lists of nearby places to stay, to eat and to visit including picturesque Hadrian’s Wall. The gallery welcomes wheelchairs, and provides disabled parking and toilets. You may wish to phone ahead for enquiries about additional facilities.
Guildhall Art Gallery
Displaying approximately 250 works at a time, the Guildhall Art Gallery in London houses many beloved paintings and offers free tours of the permanent collection on Fridays. The gallery is fully accessible for mobility impaired visitors and equipped with Braille, large print information and wheelchairs on loan.
Located in Sheffield, the Cupola Gallery is a fairly new venue that boasts a penchant for innovation and an intriguing sculpture garden. They exhibit arts and crafts from local to international artists. Their main space is always filled with something different, as pieces are changed around 10 times per year. As part of a commitment to friendliness the gallery offers free hot drinks and, on Saturdays, free chocolate cake.