The search is underway to find the very best in exceptional accessibility for disabled people at hotels, restaurants, leisure, and tourism venues.
The Blue Badge Access Awards 2023 (BBAA) will recognise venues in the hospitality, leisure, and tourism industry that are getting ‘Accessibility with Style’ right.
The 12 awards will be presented in October, ranging from Best Bar and Best Spa to Best Historic Building and Best Conceptual Design. The Ludicrous Loo Award returns, and brand new for this year will be The Ridiculous Ramp Award!
The aim of the awards is to encourage hospitality industry bosses, architects, and designers worldwide to consider ways in which they can address the needs of disabled people and to make their experience more joyful and inclusive.
“These awards focus the minds of designers and architects to become creative and forward thinking for the needs of all,” said Michael Caines MBE, the BBAA’s new Access Ambassador and Executive Chef at Lympstone Manor.
“The future should be all about inclusivity. My hope for tomorrow is that spaces are designed with consideration for all people’s needs. Accessible, creative, beautiful, and above all, inclusive. The hospitality sector should be leading the way, inspiring other sectors to follow our lead”.
There are now 14.6 million disabled people in the UK increasing with an ageing population and accessible tourism in England is worth £15.3 billion a year.
“We want to drive the industry to replace the DDA compliant rooms and re-title them ‘Liberty Rooms’,” explained BBAA Co-Founder and President of Bespoke Hotels Robin Sheppard, pictured above with Michael Caines MBE (left) and the CEO of Blue Badge Style Fiona Jarvis
“Disability is not only about wheelchair access. 9% of disabled people are wheelchair users, and 75% of disabled people have hidden impairments. We need to look after all our disabled guests. Many accessible hotel bedrooms can look more like a hospital than a hotel. This needs to change”.
The deadline for nominations is September 18 and full details are available at www.bluebadgeaccessawards.com