The Haymarket Theatre was built in 1972, boasting a huge stage and great acoustics. Unfortunately, however, access arrangements for disabled people were wholly inadequate in buildings at this time.
By the time it closed in 2007, the theatre had limited provision for people with restricted mobility and wheelchair users.
We are now committed to redressing that situation within the physical constraints of the 1970’s building.
It is of paramount importance to everyone on the board of the Haymarket Consortium that the Haymarket Theatre is a fully inclusive venue, and we are committed to ensuring that anyone with restricted mobility feels comfortable and safe using our facilities.
We have consulted with experts and key campaigners to ensure that the measures we have come up with meet the needs of our customers. These measures are detailed below and will all be in place when the venue fully opens later in 2019:
Lifts: Following extensive negotiations with the Haymarket Shopping Centre, we are pleased to advise new lift facilities will be installed over the coming months. These facilities are planned, when complete, to service all floors of the building, from street level and all levels of the Haymarket car park. The lift provision will be located next to Tesco on Belgrave Gate. Until work on the new lift installation is completed, the existing lifts in the Haymarket Shopping Centre can be available (even when the shops are closed) to our customers. Anyone with restricted mobility is advised to contact the Ticket Office to ensure we can provide assistance and help manage your specific requirements (at least 72 hours prior to attending).
Stage/Backstage: Access to these areas complies with the requirements that applied when the theatre was built, but is inadequate in a modern venue. Further works are being considered over the coming months to provide improved access to these areas for those with restricted mobility.
Seating: The new seating layout in the auditorium has trebled the number of seats for wheelchair users or people with restricted mobility. We now have nine potential spaces, each with fantastic views of the stage.
Bar and Ticket Office: Improvements have been made to provide a lowered section to the Main Foyer Bar – which will also serve as the ticket office in the short term – making transactions more comfortable for wheelchair users. A new ticket facility will be available when the new lifts are complete.
Entrance: Our new entrance offers easier access to the building, with automatic doors and a spacious vestibule.
Toilets: Brand new accessible toilets have been installed, as well as a new baby change facility.
The works involved in making the Haymarket Theatre more accessible are substantial and have required negotiations with the owners of the building. The nature of the works means they will be completed in two phases:
Phase 1: COMPLETE: Main auditorium seating, new entrance and bar/ticket office
Phase 2: 2020: Completion of the lifts providing access to the stage/backstage, and Studio, Upper Foyer and Hobgoblin Bar
This means that until 2020, people with restricted mobility may not be able to access the upstairs facilities (studio theatre/upper foyer/Hobgoblin bar) and the stage/backstage areas. However, the downstairs bar, foyer and Main Auditorium are fully accessible.
Our staff are committed to making everyone’s visit as enjoyable and stress-free as possible. Please contact us to let us know of any mobility needs at least 72 hours in advance of your visit and we will do our very best to help.