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University of Bristol partners with DisabledGo

Accessible entrance at the Priory Road Complex

13 July 2016

The Estates Office has joined in partnership with DisabledGo who are leading providers of online accessibility guides trusted by disabled visitors.

The Estates Office facilities managers have been providing access statement information to disabled visitors to the University for many years.  The statements were a written summary of the features of a University venue. They described a visitor’s journey in to and out of academic properties and used to be available on request.

In talking to the disabled community, the facilities managers realised that the self-reporting of access information can often overlook or fail to appreciate the reality of the access provided. It was this recognition that has led to a partnership with DisabledGo. 

DisabledGo is unique among national access information providers because only they;

  • visit and survey every venue in person
  • use a survey method that over 800 groups of disabled people have fed into
  • have a national network of steering groups that guide their work and support the continuous development of their service
  • offer a standardised service – their trained surveyors use the same high standards and pan-disability survey template to ensure that all of our guides are accurate, reliable and presented in a user-friendly format.

Paul Smith, Deputy Director of Estates and Head of Facilities Management said: “We strive to achieve and improve accessibility in all our buildings, working with the historic fabric of each space and with local planning policy.  We are delighted to be working with DisabledGo to provide our students, staff and visitors with useful and up-to-date information about the accessibility of our buildings and grounds.”

On the University of Bristol’s webpage disabled visitors can now find accessibility guides for 55 of the academic and professional services buildings. Over the summer and autumn will begin to survey a further 25 properties to ensure the student residences are included.  Visitors can search the website for access guides on specific activities in buildings, such as cafes and restaurants, conference centres, rooms and halls, libraries, sports, Student Services, Students' Union, teaching and theatres, cinemas and museums.

Visitors to the University webpages can find the link to from a number of sites, including from tours and visits and Disability Services.