As UK attractions begin to reopen and lockdown restrictions ease, travel content provider Rough Guides has published the latest edition of The Rough Guide to Accessible Britain to help people of all abilities start to plan their days out.
Available online for free and published this week, The Rough Guide to Accessible Britain is the eighth edition of this guide and features over 200 comprehensive reviews.
Through collaboration with Carers Trust and the National Autistic Society, this edition features more information relevant to carers and those with hidden disabilities.
Furthermore, the guide features 25 new venue reviews including outdoor attractions such as Belfast Zoo, Kew Gardens, Legoland, Trebah Gardens, and Powis Castle. Plus, all existing reviews have been updated and refreshed pre-COVID-19.
Over 85 attractions and ideas featured in the guide are outdoors, including nine scenic drives.
To gather information for this comprehensive guide, The Rough Guide to Accessible Britain survey was completed online between February and March 2020 by 541 respondents, 456 of which receive Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payment (PIP), 61 are carers for someone with a disability, and 17 preferred not to say.
According to this survey, 51 percent of people with a disability, or their carers, spend between two and five hours planning a day out, and one in ten spend more than a day researching.
The majority of this research is conducted online, the survey found, with 92 percent searching on the internet and 12 percent using online communities. 42 percent also said they will call the venue in advance to ensure they have all the information they need ahead of visiting.
Emma West, Reviewer and Foreword Author of the guide, said: “If you have specific access requirements, or care for someone who does, planning a day out is much more complex.
“The Rough Guide to Accessible Britain is such a valuable resource for simplifying that process and opening up options for exploring the incredible venues we have on our doorstep in the UK.
“It’s widely acknowledged that being outside is great for our mental health too, so I’m proud to be involved in celebrating the attractions which have made significant efforts to ensure a brilliant day out for everyone, regardless of any physical, mental health or cognitive condition.”
When asked what makes a great day out, comments from respondents highlighted how important the feeling of inclusion is. One respondent said: “…Where I don’t have to feel my disability is limiting my experience – or rather, where inaccessibility isn’t limiting my experience.”
Remarks also referenced feeling fully informed about the accessibility of a venue, such as: “Feeling completely at ease and included without having to do loads of research and having to call the venue to ask for special arrangements to be made.”