Project information

Salisbury Playhouse 40th Anniversary Campaign

Breaking down physical barriers so everyone can access Salisbury Playhouse. Our 40 year old building is preventing us from engaging with our whole community. We will improve access to our facilities and services to provide a welcoming environment for everyone who wishes to engage with the theatre.

May 2013 - December 2016

Charity information

Salisbury Playhouse

Salisbury Playhouse logo
  • Need


    Coming to the theatre should be something that anyone can do. We work hard to ensure individuals aren’t faced with barriers if they wish to be an audience member, take part in an outreach project with our Participation Department, join our Youth Theatre or even join our staff. We already have many facilities in place, but want to make some important improvements to our building and working practices to ensure that by our 40th anniversary in this building we are as accessible to all as possible.


    We have already upgraded our accessible toilets and signage. We now need to install automatic doors to improve physical access and continue to improve the services we offer by updating our Audio description equipment and offering refresher training to our volunteer team, increasing the number of Captioned Performances for the deaf and hard of hearing and undertaking more work in the community. By the end of the project, anyone should be able to engage with us easily.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Improve all-round access to the building both physically and in the services we provide.


    » Carry out a series of maintenance works and upgrades to improve physical access around our building for all ages and requirements.
    » Improving our current services such as Audio Description by upgrading the equipment we use and increasing services such as Captioned Performances.
    » Giving all relevant staff appropriate Access Awareness training and current service providers refresher training, for instance our Audio Describers.
    » Ensure that progress is highlighted to our audience, local user groups and relevant bodies through regular communication activities.

    Success will be positive feedback from our public, demonstrating that the project has been beneficial and that their experience of visiting the theatre is easier and more enjoyable

    Aim 2

    Encourage more individuals with disabilities to engage with the theatre


    » We will engage with relevant local groups to ensure that they are aware that they are not excluded from participating in the theatre.
    » We will upgrade and improve our offering to those with disabilities to facilitate their engagement with the theatre.
    » We will run communications campaigns through local media and relevant disability publications to raise awareness of our improved facilities.

    Success will be seeing an increase in the use of our services and facilities by individuals with a disability and engaging new people with services such as Audio Description.

  • Impact


    Everyone who wants to will be able to interact with the building easily, comfortably and safely. We will see an increase in audience numbers from specific user groups and will monitor progress through our Box Office. We will engage more people with our outreach work and encourage more people with a disability to apply to work with us. We will raise awareness of the barriers people with a disability face and be held up as a model of best practice by our peer organisations.


    There is always more that can be done. There is a risk that there will be an element that we haven’t taken into account or that there is a need we have not met. We will ensure that Access is at the forefront of each management meeting and that we regularly update staff training and awareness. We will continue to hold special access group meetings (involving key members of staff and representatives of user groups) to monitor progress and discuss feedback about what still needs to be done


    We will regularly update our donors through newsletters, on our website and direct communications. We will update the wider audience through a series of press releases to the local media. Finally, we will invite donors to the theatre to experience the new facilities and services.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £115,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £12,000 Audio description equipment Upgrading and replacing equipment for the audio description service
      £90,000 Physical improvments Installation of automatic foyer doors, improved signage and accessibility to all our facilities
      £13,000 Marketing and training Staff and volunteer training and communicating the improvements
  • Background


    Salisbury Playhouse is a producing theatre in the heart of Salisbury. The majority of our productions are made in house in our dedicate workshop, wardrobe and prop-making store. Our "Made in Wiltshire" stamp is both a recognised symbol of theatrical excellence and a demonstration that we are proud to serve the community in which we are based. We entertain and delight individuals from across our region and engage with thousands of people- young and old - through our award-winning outreach work.


    In 2010 more than 29,000 people in Wiltshire were claiming a disability allowance, approximately 6.5% of the population, highlighting the importance of accessibility. In addition 18.7% of Salisbury’s population are of retirement age, which is higher than the average in Wiltshire. By improving our facilities we can help to address a number of issues across various groups by facilitating engagement with the theatre.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Salisbury Playhouse is one of the leading producing theatres in the UK and the only producing theatre in Wiltshire. A creative cultural heartbeat in the region, Salisbury Playhouse is the arts hub of the area and is visited by over 100,000 people each year from Wiltshire, Hampshire, Dorset and further afield. As a beacon amongst arts organisations in the region, it is our duty to provide a safe, accessible environment for everyone and find ways for anyone who wants to engage with us to do so.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Access Committee

    Salisbury Playhouse's Access Committee, chaired by the Executive Director, ensures that the needs identified are actionned and communicated.