Scottish Thistle Awards: Fringe Society wins Inclusive Tourism Award
10 March 2020
The Fringe Society has been recognised as part of the 2020 Scottish Thistle Awards, which celebrate innovation, success and excellence in Scotland’s tourism sector.
We were named the inaugural winner of the national Inclusive Tourism Award. The award recognises organisations who set the standard for inclusive tourism practices and can serve as an example to the tourism industry, by emphasising their inclusion ethos, demonstrating a commitment to quality information provision and providing excellent customer service.
The Glasgow Science Centre, All Together Travel, The Rings and Homelands Trust – Fife were also shortlisted.
Shona McCarthy, the Society's Chief Executive, said:
'We’re delighted to accept the first Thistle Award for Inclusive Tourism. Access and inclusion are absolutely integral to our work, and while we know we’ve still got work to do, we’re proud to be recognised for the steps we’ve taken so far.
'Our partners have been so influential in shaping this work. Thank you to Attitude is Everything, Euan’s Guide and Birds of Paradise for their advice and support. As we continue to make strides in improving the accessibility of the Fringe, a priority will be to work in collaboration and consultation with the people who’ll benefit from them.'
One of our key priorities is removing barriers to attending the Fringe, so that anyone who wants to experience this amazing festival can. This includes:
- maintaining an access bookings service, which helps people with access requirements find shows and book tickets
- loaning out sensory backpacks for children and adults with autism
- providing British Sign Language interpretation for street performances on the High Street
- generating accessible show listings
- providing a Changing Places toilet for people unable to use a standard accessible toilet
- utilising the Neatebox Welcome app, which lets people with access requirements tell us in advance that they’re coming to the Fringe.
Lyndsey McLean, our Community Engagement and Access Manager, said:
'We’re delighted to receive this award from VisitScotland in recognition of our efforts to make the Edinburgh Festival Fringe as inclusive as possible. We’re not there yet, but will take this as encouragement to keep up our hard work.'