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The initiative is the first of a raft of measures that form a £2.3m support package for West Yorkshire’s creative sector.

Mayor West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin speaking at an event
Brabin says her authority is "on a mission" to make sure that West Yorkshire’s culture offer is accessible to all

Venues and event organisers will be supported to become more accessible to disabled artists and audiences as part of a scheme launched by West Yorkshire Combined Authority.

Delivered by Wakefield-based disabled-led organisation Unlimited, the inaugural accessibility session took place in Halifax today, where attendees learnt the basics of disability equality, how to make venues and events accessible, and how to support disabled artists and audiences.

The scheme offers a "one-stop shop" for support and guidance, with grants of up to £10,000 also available to help make cultural venues more accessible.


It is the first scheme to be rolled out as part of West Yorkshire Mayor Tracy Brabin’s £2.3m ‘You Can Make It Here’ programme, which aims to support and grow the region’s creative sector through a range of training and investment opportunities.

Further initiatives will be launched over the coming months, including business and skills training to support freelancers, help for creative businesses to increase their exports, and a music sector network to boost activity in the region.

Opportunities for young people from disadvantaged groups to break down the barriers and secure employment in television and film production roles will also be introduced through an extension of support for the Mayor’s Screen Diversity Programme, run by Screen Yorkshire. 

'Accessible to all'

Brabin said her authority is "on a mission" to ensure that West Yorkshire’s cultural offerings are accessible to all. 

“This first investment is just the beginning," she said. 

"Everything we’re rolling out over the coming months is going to give our creative businesses, freelancers, venues and beyond the support they need to unleash their potential. 

“Thanks to devolution giving us the freedom to play to our strengths, we’re building a stronger, brighter West Yorkshire that works for all.”

Jo Verrent, Director at Unlimited, said: "We’re excited to be bringing this bespoke programme of training, advice and guidance, along with small-scale capital grants that will support and empower arts organisations and those who programme arts events across Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, and Wakefield.

“We exist to support and commission disabled artists and create change across the sector. 

"So, I’m thrilled this work is happening in the North, our home, so we can really catalyse change that makes a lasting impact for disabled artists and disabled-led work.”