Inspired by British Science Week we have been scouring the internet for accessible Science Centres for young people who are blind or partially sighted and their families. We found a few events which sound fantastic, such as special events at the Science Museum in London. We also a few venues which didn’t offer a lot of information online for visitors with a visual impairment.
Here is our summary of what we found, please add any we have missed in the comments or let us know if you have visited any of the mentioned venues and what you thought! It would also be interesting to hear if there were any venues you visited with your family which weren’t as accessible on the day as you hoped.
Science Museum, London
The Science Museum run VIscovery days throughout the year to enable families with members who are blind or partially sighted (7+ years) to enjoy events around the Museum that are specially designed for them. Events are free but booking is required. We have heard some positive feedback from families on social media about their past events.
The next planned event is on 20 May, you can find out more here:
Visit the Science Museum website >
Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium, Winchester
The centre’s ethos is ‘hands on not hands off’. This sounds ideal for those looking for a sensory experience! However there is no specific information regarding access for visually impaired visitors so you may need to call ahead to find out more.
Visit the Winchester Science Centre website >
National Space Centre, Leicester
The National Space Centre has six interactive galleries, the UK’s largest planetarium (this is a very visual exhibit) and the iconic 42m high Rocket Tower. If you call in advance of your visit you can book a touch tour and large print information is available upon request.
Visit the National Space Centre website >
Life Science Centre, Newcastle upon Tyne
The Life Science Centre are proud to be a fully accessible venue and hold the Equality Standard Gold Award. Large print is available upon request (0191) 243 8208 but they do recommend a sighted assistant to accompany you on your visit (their admission is free). They advise ringing ahead before a visit on (0191) 243 8210.
Visit the Life website >
Eureka, the national children’s museum is full of multi-sensory exhibits. They are proud to be accessible for ALL visitors. Information leaflets and flyers are available in large print at the information desk, the main entrance area is well lit with natural light, and there is level access with a lift between floors. They also offer specially tailored ‘Super Sunday’ clubs for visitors with additional requirements.
There is Super Sunday event for Visually Impaired young people on Sunday 7 May 2017. Sessions are free but must be pre-booked, you will find more information on the following link.
Visit the Eureka website >
National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
The National Museum of Scotland houses nature, art, design and fashion and science and technology all under one roof. The museum offers tours for visually impaired and deaf visitors. If you call three weeks in advance you can arrange one of these tours with handling opportunities.
Visit the National Museum of Scotland website >
Welcome Collection, London
The museum currently has an audio described tour planned for it’s exhibit ‘Electricity: The Spark of Life’ on Thursday 20th April (aimed at adults). Their Visitor Experience Assistant has been trained in audio description techniques by VocalEyes and has designed this tour for visitors who are blind or partially sighted. Places are free but very limited and need to be pre-booked, you will find all the information on the following link.
Visit the Welcome Collection website >
We hope you find this useful, let us know if you make any amazing discoveries!