Welcome to Open Britain everyone!
This new website aims to inspire visitors to Britain’s wonderful towns, cities, countryside and coast to find those memorable experiences which enhance our lives.
So many of us require extra assurance that our needs will be met - whether we are a young independent wheelchair user; a grandparent who is not as agile as they used to be and needs a ground floor room; one of the many people with a hearing or vision impairment; or a member of the deaf community. Finding information on accessible holidays or travel, which is often scattered in many different places, is a major barrier. This website, which is the dream of the charity Tourism for All UK, aims to help overcome it.
Open Britain brings together information from a variety of sources in order to provide as much choice and coverage as possible. VisitEngland and DisabledGo are key partners in this, both of whom undertake access inspections. VisitEngland awards ratings for accommodation under the National Accessible Scheme and DisabledGo collects access information on behalf of a wide range of organisations and local authorities. And of course Tourism for All members are also prominently featured. Some of the information is provided by the venues themselves, ie they are self-assessed. For those seeking extra assurance, inspected venues carry the logo of the organisation who visited them.
In launching the new site, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson said:
"Planning any sort of trip when you have access needs can be a real challenge. Bringing together the information for the UK that's needed into one tourism site will be a tremendous help, especially one that focuses on the tourism aspects as well as the accessibility. I hope that every hotel, attraction and restaurant in Britain will take advantage of the chance to easily promote their facilities to disabled travellers."
Tourism for All thanks all the partners who are helping realise their vision, especially the sponsors and Premier Supporters whose logos are displayed below, and the talented team at NVG who have created this website.
"Not only is this initiative creating a national and comprehensive access information service, which is useful to anyone visiting the UK, it also provides businesses with an additional way to highlight and promote their accessible services. OpenBritain is playing an important part in incentivising more businesses to improve their own accessibility and provides a challenge to those that are not listed. With over 10 million disabled people in the UK, it clearly makes good business sense to make services accessible to disabled customers."
Rt Hon Maria Miller MP, now Secretary of State at the DCMS, formerly Minister for Disabled People.