Tactile Maps, Kensington: More Than Just Wayfinding
Article: Andrew Mashigo, MaMoMi
Contributor: Loz Simpson, Topografik
Contributor: Mrs Shirley Long, The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Image credit: The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Image description: Image depicts the robust three-dimensional tactile map featuring colour-coding, raised letters, symbols and braille. The raised letters and braille are depicted in grey colour, the park and open spaces are depicted in green colour, the buildings in purple, the roads in dark blue and bus stops are marked with round yellow symbols. The map is installed on specially designed lectern style stands.
WHAT ARE TACTILE MAPS?
Tactile maps are images that use raised surfaces so that a visually impaired (VI) person can feel them. They are used to convey non-textual information such as maps, with tactile map symbol conventions for pictorial information sharing. Symbols are chosen as the first focus since they are the features that represent the geographic reality and data.
“Tactile images, maps and touch installations enhance the experiences that people with sight difficulties have, making their visit more engaging, informative and stimulating, allowing greater independence and inclusion.” – RNIB Tactile Maps and Maps 2015 Brochure
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC), working with Guide Dogs for the Blind and the Royal National Institute Of Blind People (RNIB), and designed by Topografik, produced these robust three-dimensional maps featuring colour-coding, raised letters, symbols and braille. The raised letters and braille are depicted in grey colour, the park and open spaces are depicted in green colour, the buildings in purple, the roads in dark blue and bus stops are marked with round yellow symbols.
The story with the tactile maps in Kensington started with the Exhibition Road project. One of the things RBKC agreed with Guide Dogs for the Blind was to provide some form of wayfinding for blind and partially sighted people to get around the Exhibition Road area.
Image description: This Image depicts a close-up view of the tactile map, looking at it from the top left side. There is a guide dog to the right with the dog handler wearing a blue Guide Dogs tee shirt, with the handler’s right hand feeling the map by using his palm. We can clearly see the raised letters, symbols and braille on the map.
Image credit: The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Read the full article Tactile Maps, Kensington: More Than Just Wayfinding for more information.
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea RBKC
Royal National Institute Of Blind People RNIB
Guide Dogs For The Blind
Visual Awareness Training:
Huge congratulations go to our first cohort of sighted guides on completion of our visual awareness training. After months working closely with Andrew and Lynn and gaining valuable experience guiding, supporting and assisting at several of our events, the sighted guides have now completed their visual awareness training, which included a half-day training session.
Visual Awareness Training aims to give people an understanding of sight loss, discussing some of the issues visually impaired may face daily and the support that can be offered. Included in our training sessions are discussions about the range of sight conditions, the emotional impact of sight loss, practising sighted guiding skills, possible sight loss related reasonable adjustments, discussions around legal obligations and good practice when communicating with blind and partially sighted people. We also show how products from our in-house digital imaging projects are used to share accessible information to blind and partially sighted clients and participants.
Below are three of the guides receiving their certificates of completion. Congrats again to Ismael Moga, Ryan Prince and Shisheng Wang.
Image description: This image shows Ismael collecting his certificate. He is standing in the middle and holding his certificate, with Lynn on the left and Andrew on the right. They are all smiling.
Image description: This image shows Ryan collecting his certificate. He is standing in the middle and holding his certificate, with Lynn on the left and Andrew on the right. They are all smiling.
Image description: This image shows Shisheng collecting her certificate. She is standing on the right with Andrew on the left. They are both smiling.
Museum Access: Expanding the experiences for visually impaired audiences.
At MaMoMi, we continue to support museum access for visually impaired audiences and Andrew’s continued work with the Design Museum, London, has helped to develop a series of multisensory tours for the museum’s blind and partially sighted visitors.
Read Museum Access for more information about a selection of past events.
This image shows some visually impaired visitors and sighted guides walking towards the Design Museum entrance for the Architecture tour in May 2018.
This image shows Andrew describing the Commonwealth wall map and its textural characteristics before touching.
This image shows Andrew leading a group of visually impaired visitors through the Ferrari exhibition in March 2018 and giving a detailed description of the Ferrari F40 car on display.
Image description: This image depicts the workshop session after the Ferrari exhibition tour, giving participants an opportunity to respond to and create their version of the cars explored at the exhibition.
DoppelDänger, an accessible performance.
By real-life doppelgängers, She Goat.
Thursday 14th of June 2018.
Camden People’s Theatre in London.
Image description: This image shows Shamira lifting a large sheet of fabric above her head, staring at the audience with a curious gaze.
Image description: This image shows Eugenie playing her base guitar and standing on a bench on the left, while Shamira plays the keyboard while singing and standing in the middle of the stage.
Image description: This image is a close up view of the jacket Shamira and Eugenie wear at their performances, with Andrew lifting the edge of the jacket so we can have a closer view of the embroidered fringe. The capital letter D is stitched with gold fabric to the back of the jacket.
Image description: This image shows Lynn exploring the Autoharp instrument during the pre-event touch tour. Shamira is on the left of the image and wearing her baroque costume, kneeling forward while holding the edge of the Autoharp as it rests on Lynn’s thighs.
The Accessible show:
After years of being mistaken for one another, real-life doppelgängers, Eugénie and Shamira, have finally made a show about it.
With gender-twisting visuals and gothic storytelling, DoppelDänger is an exploration of dangerous doubling that reclaims what it means to be two women on stage.
You’ll be seeing double with this gig theatre featuring experimental live music and Baroque-pop mash-ups.
We saw the show on Thursday 14th of June at Camden People’s Theatre in London, and really pleased that it was successfully made accessible for visually impaired audiences. A pre-event touch tour explored costumes, instruments and props used in the show, and an audio-described introduction described key elements of the play. Making the show accessible to visually impaired audiences means that these performances can be enjoyed by a wider audience and with greater participation.
Further accessible show dates.
Further accessible dates for DoppelDänger show, in Bristol and London, are listed below;
Date: Thursday 21st June 2018.
Venue: The Wardrobe Theatre, Bristol.
Time: 6.45pm for the Touch Tour and Audio Described Introduction to the show. The Performance starts at 8pm.
Contact the Wardrobe Theatre on 0117 902 0344
Date: Sunday 1st July 2018.
Venue: Greenwich Theatre, London.
Time: The Touch Tour start time TBC shortly. The performance starts at 7.30pm.
Contact Greenwich Theatre on 020 8858 7755
For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
NDACA at City Hall: Audio Description Tour, a Shape Arts event.
Blind and sight impaired people are invited to join Shape for a free Audio Description tour of the National Disability Arts Collection and Archive exhibition at City Hall on 13 June.
Image Credit: Shape Arts
Telling the story of the Disability Arts Movement through a series of boards featuring articles, archive items, scanned pieces from the collection, quotes and a timeline, the exhibition is a journey through the history of disability arts, when disabled people broke down barriers, helped change the law and made great art and culture about those struggles. This Audio Description tour will explore the artworks, objects and photographs featured in the exhibition and includes a joint talk with Audio Describer Louise Fryer and NDACA’s Archivist Alex Cowan.
The tour is free to attend, however booking is required. Numbers are limited and early booking is advisable. If you would like to attend, please email email@example.com or call 020 7424 7322.
There will be a brief security check on the door so please arrive at 10.25am and meet in the café downstairs.
Visiting and travel information for City Hall can be found at www.london.gov.uk/about-us/our-building-and-squares/how-find-city-hall.
The National Disability Arts Collection and Archive (NDACA) is a project delivered by Shape Arts and chronicles the heritage story of the Disability Arts Movement, when a group of disabled people and their allies broke down barriers, helped change the law and made great art and culture about that journey. At the end of June 2018, Shape will launch www.the-ndaca.org, where the material past of the Disability Arts Movement comes to life through a catalogue of 3,000 deposits, a series of oral history films, Disability History Month animations, and so much more.
Where: City Hall, The Queen’s Walk, London, SE1 2AA
When: 13th June, 2018
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
General Data Protection regulation (GDPR) is a new legal framework formalized in Europe Union (EU) in 2016, it’s expected that all the applicable organizations will be in compliance with the GDPR by 25 May 2018.
The GDPR effectively replaces the Data Protection Directive (DPD) introduced in 1995 and is considered as much stronger than the Data Protection Directive (DPD).
The GDPR will facilitate the expansion of digital transformation by providing certainty to business organizations and also puts the customer back in control over his or her personal data.
GDPR means businesses can engage with customers within a properly defined legal context.
The GDPR and SMEs
Under the GDPR data processing organizations are required to maintain records of all data processing activities, but micro, small and medium-sized (SME) enterprises with fewer than 250 employees are excluded from this regulation.
For the benefit of those who are not familiar with EU, the EU notion of SME is given below.
SME — An enterprise categorized as micro, small and medium-sized (SME) enterprises if they fall under following two criteria.
Number of employees is fewer than 250.
Annual turnover or balance sheet is less than EUR 50 million.
Within the SME category there are further sub-categories as small and micro.
Number of employees is fewer than 50.
Annual turnover or balance sheet is less than EUR 10 million.
Number of employees is fewer than 10.
Annual turnover or balance sheet is less than EUR 2 million.
As an organisation, though we fall into the category of micro SMEs, we have taken the decision to comply with and create our GDPR policy.
Please read our GDPR document by clicking the MaMoMi GDPR Policy link below.
Announcing DoppelDänger by She Goat.
Image description: A tangle of six doppelgangers with limbs entwined, as they play various instruments: a bright blue electric bass, 1980s style synth keyboard, large tenor recorder, and autoharp. The doppelgängers wear uncannily similar outfits: gold and brown playsuits lined with fancy white lace, white skull caps with holes for their ears, and white leather wrestling booties. Photo Credit: James Allan.
Date: Thursday 14th June 2018
Venue: Camden People’s Theatre, London
Time: 7.30pm for Touch Tour and Audio Described Introduction to the show and 9pm for Performance.
This part-gig part-theatre wild and gothic exploration of dangerous doubling is now touring with performances accessible to blind and partially sighted audiences in London and Bristol this Summer!
About the show:
After years of being mistaken for one another, real-life doppelgängers, Eugénie and Shamira, have finally made a show about it. Encompassing experimental live music, Baroque-pop mash-ups and gothic storytelling, DoppelDänger is a bilingual boundary-bending attic takeover about the self, the other and togetherness. Featuring an uncanny blend of 1930s wrestling and 1630s-inspired Euro “retrofuturism” for the bespoke-made costumes, an eclectic mix of instruments including autoharp and synth; DoppelDänger is a theatrical gig fuelled with gender-twisting sibling rivalry.
Shamira Turner and Eugénie Pastor are associate artists of award-winning Little Bulb Theatre. Together they are She Goat, interested in extravagant multi-tasking and blurring the territories of theatre and music.
Call the venue’s box office at 0207 4194 841 to book your place on the pre-show free touch tour and any booking needs.
Alternatively, email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
VI concession tickets: £10
VI companions and sighted guides: Free ticket
DoppelDänger is created & performed by She Goat (Shamira Turner & Eugénie Pastor)
Commissioned by Battersea Arts Centre
Supported by and developed at Camden People’s Theatre
Supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.
Website: Camden People’s Theatre
Please click on the image below for the Audio Described video of the DoppelDanger trailer
Sensibility Festival: Unlock The Sensory Labyrinth.
Dates: Friday 18 – Sunday 20 May 2018
Time: 10am – 4pm
Venues: Touchbase Pears & MAC, Birmingham.
As part of Sensibility Festival, mac and Sense Arts invite you to explore, play and experiment. The centrepiece of the festival is the Sensory Labyrinth, a large scale interactive arts installation designed to be touched, eaten, smelt, moved and felt that has been co-curated by 60 participants with complex communication needs. Experiential guided tours of the Sensory Labyrinth across the two venues (TouchBase Pears and mac) allow you to discover all that is on offer. Starting from Touchbase Pears, audiences can freely participate or take time away from each section of the tour.
Tours are available on Friday and Sunday and must be pre-booked.
Drop in and explore the Sensory Labyrinth independently on Saturday. Free admission, no booking required. Transport will be provided and each ticket admits one individual and companion. If you are booking online a member of the Customer Services team will be in touch to take note of communication preferences and additional requirements prior to the tour.
Please note that the 10am and 10.30am tours on Sunday will be smaller groups to enable anyone who finds crowds overwhelming to access the event.
Sensibility has been co-produced by the Midlands Arts Centre, Sense Arts and co-directed by Graeae Theatre Company and Steph Singer (BitterSuite/Open Senses Festival), in collaboration with artists Justin Wiggan, Lynn Cox, Saranjit Birdi and InterACTION.
Last entry time to the installation is 4.30pm
Website: MAC Birmingham
Image description: The Image shows the face of a gentleman and a lady next to each other. A bright light runs across each of their faces from top to bottom.
Portrait Image credit © Franklyn Rodgers
Below is the audio-described video introducing the Sensibility Festival
CALL TO ACTION:
Help improve the State of Museum Access 2018
Article by VocalEyes
Published 8 January 2018
In 2016 VocalEyes published a report on the State of Museum Access (see report below) in which they assessed the provision of access information on the websites of all 1700 accredited UK museums.
For 2018, VocalEyes are preparing to repeat the audit this spring, and will publish the State of Museum Access 2018 in the autumn.
While the 2016 research mainly focused on access information relevant to blind and partially sighted people, they are broadening the scope in 2018 to record information relevant to a wider range of audiences, using the model developed for their work on the State of Theatre Access 2017, with partner organisations.
This is a call to action for museum staff across the UK. Providing access information online is not expensive or difficult. VocalEyes have developed Museum Access Information Guidelines, and Visit England and Visit Scotland have launched their own excellent resource (Accessibility Guides). Their team of research volunteers will be starting the new survey this spring.
It’s the belief that disabled people have a right to access, and feel included at every museum in the UK. Please check your museum website, or that of any other museum you know or love. If there is no access information, send them a link to this article by VocalEyes and ask them help improve the State of Museum Access 2018.
Read the full article by clicking Help improve the State of Museum Access 2018 or any of the images on the right.
State of Museum Access Report 2016
There are many examples across the UK of museums, galleries and heritage sites welcoming and providing good opportunities for blind and partially sighted and other disabled visitors to experience their venue and collections. Indeed, UK museums are recognised among the most accessible of all public buildings. A range of museums across the country from the nationals to smaller local and independent museums and heritage sites offer resources and public programming include audio-described tours, handling sessions, Large Print and braille labels, tactile maps and drawings. Above all, many venues have staff trained to welcome, guide and support blind and partially sighted visitors.
However, the report published here reveals that this is only true of a small proportion of museums, with many appearing to take no steps to welcome or provide access information or resources for blind and partially sighted people.
Read the full article by clicking State of Museum Access Report 2016 or on the image above.
Social Security Disability Benefits Guide
Understand how Social Security disability works and how to calculate your benefits
Article by The Simple Dollar
Published 2 November 2016
Please note: This article was submitted by a US-based associate hoping to highlight available benefits for people with disabilities.
Social Security disability benefits can provide for your family when an injury, illness, or disability prevents you from working and earning an income. Applying for benefits is often seen as a cumbersome process requiring several steps, a slew of complicated paperwork, and even in-person hearings.
This guide will explain how Social Security disability benefits work while helping you determine whether your disability, illness, or chronic condition is enough to qualify.
Read the full article by clicking Social Security Disability Benefits Guide.
Lincoln’s Festival of Sound and Music
30 September to 7 October 2016
Sonophilia is an 8-day-long festival programme breaking barriers between experimental sound art and live music across genres; developing audiences; supporting artists; encouraging people to try something new.
Read more about the Sonophilia Festival 2016