Access all areas part 2: Ways to make hospitality venues more accessible

Kate Malczewski

Kate Malczewski

27 November 2020

In the second in our series on making hospitality more inclusive for disabled people, we look at 5 of the most effective ways to make your venue more accessible

As reported in our recent investigation into accessible spaces in bars, pubs and restaurants, a 2019 survey of more than 1,000 disabled people conducted by disabled access review website Euan’s Guide, found that 26% of respondents felt that cafes and restaurants typically have poor accessibility. For bars and pubs, that number climbed to 36%.

Here, the team from Euan’s Guide share their top tips on simple and cost-effective ways for any venue to become more inclusive.

Menus

One cheap and simple way to create a more accessible restaurant, bar or pub is to make sure your menu is easy to read. Using a clear font, legible text size and good contrast all help to make the menu easier to follow. Having your menu available online and in different formats, such as large print or braille, will also help.

Floor plan

Consider your layouts and seating options. Try to make sure there is enough space between tables so that someone using a standard wheelchair can move around when people are seated. Avoid using only built in seating or bar stools as these are not accessible for everyone.

Easy entrance

If your venue has a couple of steps, get a ramp. If the ramp is not a permanent fixture, then make sure there is an easy way for someone to ask for it, like having a bell at an appropriate location and height that people know to ring for service.

Toilets

This is an area definitely worth spending a bit of money on if you can. Many disabled people have reported that without access to an accessible toilet, they will simply not visit.

Red cords

Already have an accessible toilet in your venue? Check your red emergency cord. All too often, these cords are cut, tied up or otherwise placed out of reach. To remind both customers and staff to leave red cords as they are, Euan’s Guide has made red cord cards to affix to emergency cords – order them here.

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