Sydney Festival slammed for not catering to those with disability

13 January, 2015

Sydney Festival organisers have been criticised for not providing adequate features for people with disabilities, with some labelling the current set-up "appalling".

The Festival's disability action plan stipulates the event is for all members of the community, irrespective of their accessibility needs.

John Little, who uses a wheelchair, said the Festival Village in Hyde Park lacked basic features for those with a disability like ramps, signage and places to purchase tickets.

"When I got to the box office, the bloody counter is about six-foot off the ground and a tiny window. Nobody in a wheelchair or of short stature could possibly buy a ticket there," Little said.

Little said when he enquired where the wheelchair-accessible counter was, he was told by an attendant that there wasn't one. A staff member had to leave the booth to speak to him and pass on his information to another.

Little also said there were numerous obstacles on pathways designed for wheelchairs.

"To get onto that path you've got to navigate a bloody step again," he said.

When asked for comment, Sydney Festival spokeswoman Jessica Keirle said: "Access is a major priority for Sydney Festival, and is always a coe consideration in our planning.

"Our Festival Village in Hyde Park is a fully accessible venue and we will continue to monitor any issues that arise."