Charlotte Fairbank attended the Wild Life Festival in Brighton at the beginning of June, with her first interaction for the festival not a positive one!
There was very little information on their website for disabled tickets with Charlotte having to ring up to buy her tickets in the end as there was no provision online to buy disabled tickets.
Although Charlotte enjoyed the actual festival there were some issues along the way after she arrived, making it a not so totally accessible festival. There was no separate disabled entrance and so the conventional entrance was not suitable for wheelchair use with the festival staff not sure whether there was actually a disabled entrance at all!
"The site didn’t have a dedicated disabled entrance, and there were no plastic sheets laid out on the grass where there had been bad weather."
Even though there was good access to the accessible stage and viewing platforms, Charlotte did not use them as she did not want to be excluded from her friends or the actual festival, and she noted that ‘one of the platforms looked like a cage’.
Not all of the festival was accessible as many of the food stalls were too high for her to reach making it difficult to pay at times. Although the toilets had good disabled facilities, they were few and quite a distance away with the festival staff not knowing where the nearest disabled toilets were.
Charlotte used public transport to get to the venue with the bus being very accessible although she waited for two and a half hours for a bus when leaving the festival, but guess that is just part of the whole festival experience! Charlotte did have to source her own transport route as there was no information at all on the festival’s website for the provision for disabled users and although she did not require local accommodation, there was no information on their website either for the provision of local accessible accommodation.
"Standard bus to and from site was accessible, and a positive experience overall."
Charlotte was lucky enough to have good weather as there appeared to be little provision if the weather had turned bad but she would still visit the festival again especially if the website is fully updated with all of the information for disabled visitors, better accessible stalls and more knowledgeable staff. And let’s hope of course the weather will be fine again….!