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Arts facilities for people with disabilities

Find out about arts opportunities in the borough for people with disabilities.

There are some organisations in the borough that have a specific disability arts programme and others that have inclusive activities.

Enjoy arts and culture

The Horniman Museum and Gardens

The Horniman Museum offers:

  • tutor-led handling sessions for groups with disabilities

  • free training for community leaders from disability groups and centres so that they can use the facilities

  • many inclusive family activities where children with disabilities are welcome and individual needs accommodated

  • wheelchair access

  • some BSL interpreter events, hearing loops, some integrated audio for exhibits, braille and large print on request.

Lewisham libraries

Our libraries:

  • stock tapes, large print books and talking books

  • have easy to use computers for people with disabilities and hearing loops

  • are wheelchair accessible.

There is a BSL collection at Catford library.

The Home library service provides free delivery service to all housebound people. There's 24 hour online access to search the catalogue, reserve and renew books, borrow ebooks and audiobooks.

Get involved in the arts

General disability arts programmes

Age Exchange offers arts health and wellbeing activities for over-60s.

Adult Education Lewisham has a large and varied programme of Supported Learning for people with learning difficulties, physical disabilities, sensory impairments or mental health difficulties.

Entelechy Arts is a participatory arts company working with people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds to produce high quality theatre, music, dance and video events and performances. It works with both adults and young people who have complex and multiple disabilities. 

Heart n Soul is a leading creative producing company working with learning disabled artists in music, theatre, dance, creating art, photography, media and film. It is piloting a new project for adults where they get the chance to take part in a variety of creative sessions.

Theatre for people with a disability

Greenwich and Lewisham Young People’s Theatre workshops are for 13–25-year-olds with moderate learning difficulties. Young people with disabilities (up to 19 years) are welcome on all programmes with the aim of integration. A summer arts college has a course for young people of 13–19 years with moderate learning difficulties and disabilities.

Spare Tyre is a leading participatory arts charity based at the Albany producing bold and powerful theatre with voiceless communities and individuals, including adults with learning disabilities and people with dementia.

Dance for people with a disability

Laban offers Dance Ability creative dance and play for disabled children aged 5–12 and their peers. Also weekly sessions in collaboration with Trinity and Greenwich Toy Library for disabled young people aged 12–21 leading to a performance.

Magpie Dance is an inclusive contemporary dance company with a national reputation for an exciting and inspiring approach to inclusive and creative dance.

Inclusive arts programmes

Other arts providers which work to make sure disabled users' needs are met, through disability awareness training and mixed-ability classes, include:

Arts courses and qualifications for people with a disability

Lewisham Southwark College's supported learning department meets the needs of those with learning difficulties and/or disabilities:

  • Skills for Creative Arts course for adult learners aged 19+ focuses on art and fashion projects.

  • Skills for Performing Arts course for school leavers aged 16 to 18, offering the opportunity to study the performing arts.

  • Transition programme for adults aged 21+ with learning difficulties who want to learn new skills and become more independent.

Students following arts academic courses are offered specialist support at both Lewisham Southwark College and Goldsmiths, University of London.

Useful websites