Saturday, 3 October 2009

Neighbourhood dispute

Nigel's band, Pindown, have a gig coming up in December (details are on his blog). This has stimulated some discussion between us as the venue that the promoter has arranged is not accessible to some people with physical disabilities.
Our discussions have got me thinking more generally about the lack of music venues in Ipswich and the fact that some of those that do exist are not fully accessible.
Last night we went to an excellent Peppery Productions gig at the Manor Ballroom. A friend of mine was there who usually uses a wheelchair but who was last night getting about with crutches.
She, and many other people that I know personally and professionally are excluded from participating in the enjoyment of live music because of the inadequacies of some venues.
This is often out of the control of the owners, who, although having requirements to make reasonable adjustments under the Disability Discrimination Act,are sometimes unable to because of cost implications or the nature of their building.
Bands are therefore forced to compromise in order to play gigs.
I don't know of any bands (except any in the Screwdriver mode) that would play a venue that excluded people on the basis of their religion, gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation - so why are bands still playing venues that are, by default, excluding people on the basis of their disability?

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